for W3c validation
Is Kobe better than Jordan? Maybe, maybe not. The thing is — I don’t really care who people think is the better player. I don’t respect Kobe Bryant as a person, so I’ll always think higher of Jordan. Kobe is selfish. Enough said. No one can sway my opinion — I watched the 4th quarter of the Lakers vs Sonics, which, if my memory serves me correctly, ended up being his 8th straight game with 40 points in 2003. I don’t have a problem with Kobe scoring 40 against my hometown Sonics — I have a problem with the way he got there.
Bryant was stuck at 39 points with about 3 minutes to go with the Lakers ahead by more than enough to not worry about winning. However, every possession, the Lakers gave him the ball and he attempted to score by taking forced shots. It was obvious all he cared about was reaching his 40-point milestone. Rashard Lewis did a stellar job at defending him into missing about 7 shots. With less than 30 seconds to go, Kobe finally drew a foul and reached his 40 point mark with a free throw. Truthfully, if I was defending Kobe in that game, I probably would have shoved Kobe head-first into the stands. Since when is it acceptable to taunt a team by attempting to reach a point milestone when the game is clearly already in hand? Truthfully, Kobe shouldn’t have even been on the floor. In case Kobe missed the memo — basketball is a team sport. Since when is WINNING NOT ENOUGH? I don’t think Michael Jordan ever would have sacrificed his integrity by forcing shots to reach a record point milestone with a game already in the bag.
One quote really irks me as a reason Kobe is better than Jordan: “The NBA is tougher now” — meaning Kobe has tougher competition. Are you f**king kidding me? Nowadays, players may be stronger and taller, but it is absurd they are tougher. I’d argue exactly the opposite. Do you not remember how the Pistons, Bulls, and Knicks used to play? Easy lay-ups and dunks didn’t happen. If you went inside, there was a good chance you’d get a elbow by the likes of Charles Oakley, Bill Laimbeer, or Anthony Mason. NBA players play for the money now — there’s no comparison as to what generation of players was more passionate about the GAME. I think it’s a given that more passionate players will fight harder to win, meaning Jordan had tougher competition.