Kobe Bryant turned 33 almost a week ago, but for a player of his magnitude, we'll extend the celebration. Heck True Hoop's Henry Abbott, he of the "King of the Kobe haters" reputation, to not only popped by, but sang The Mamba's praises. Amazing, huh? Among the talking points:
My ideal birthday gift for Kobe: A flu shot, because the man is constantly sick.
Considering the time Abbott has devoted towards debunking what he considers a myth, ("Kobe is the NBA's King of Clutch") we couldn't help but razz him about Bryant's game-winner at the Drew League. Abbott remains unmoved -- having previously debated him, we opted against a rehash -- but that's not the same thing as failure to recognize Kobe's greatness.Keeping in theme with the most recent edition of The Triangle, Abbott offered his opinion on what impresses him most about Kobe's career, titles and records aside. For Henry, it's all about the work ethic. The unquenchable desire to perfect his craft.
How great was Kobe's iconic lob to Shaq during Game 7 of the 2000 Western Conference Finals? Abbott picked it as his favorite moment of Bryant's career, and dude is a Blazer fan. From there, a discussion about Kobe's all-around game and how it relates to crunch time.
Abbott and True Hoop have extensively covered the lockout with the best of them, so we got Henry's take on what's been thus-far slow and contentious negotiations. I've long maintained a minority opinion that much of we've seen is posturing reflective of being nowhere close to the 11th hour. However, once that time is near, mutual pragmatism will win out before many games are missed, much less an entire season. For what it's worth, Abbott agrees and thinks the stickiest point is how the BRI gets divvied up.
Abbott offers the lowdown on his marathon training. And for a PED-like boost, would you rather inject yourself with Kobe's blood or douse yourself with deer antler spray?
With Henry gone, we discuss Ron Artest's name change getting tripped up by outstanding traffic warrants, which feels both very "Ron" and "L.A." It's a reminder California will laugh off whatever whimsical name you wanna give yourself or your offspring -- just ask the average Hollywood actor -- but regard unpaid revenue with grave seriousness.
Pau and Marc Gasol's shocking-by-American-standards beer commercial. Given the "Ga-soft" tag and the way Pau disappeared in the playoffs, it's fortunate he wasn't hawking some frou-frou umbrella drink.