Blinded by his past achievements, Kobe Bryant keeps talking and acting as if he’s the same player who won five NBA champions with the Los Angeles Lakers in the span of a decade, when he was one of the best players in the league, or possibly THE best for a short while.
Bryant is a two-time Finals MVP. He scored 81 points in one game once. He led the league in scoring twice. He is the greatest scorer in the history of the Lakers, a franchise that isn’t short on great, historic players. But he’s been on a decline for the past few years, noticeable, painful.
He has played only 41 games over the last two seasons. He still tries to play like he’s one of the best scorers in the league, but Bryant scoring 30 points or taking 25 shots a game is no longer the best thing for the Lakers. It hasn’t been for a long time.
But Bryant keeps brandishing his five rings when people question his ability. As if his past has anything to do with the present. He’ll always be one of the greatest to play the game, maybe even the second best shooting guard in history. But his dream of winning a sixth championship has no grip in reality. He’s part of the problem, although he’ll never admit it.