Kobe Bryant to critics: ‘Everybody, shut up’
by Adi Joseph, USA TODAY Sports
Win five rings. Then you can talk like this to your fans.
Kobe Bryant wants Los Angeles Lakers fans to be patient. The team is 0-2, Steve Nash is hurt and coach Mike Brown’s system is drawing ire. But Bryant has won five titles with the Lakers, and he is sick of the criticism.
“I’ll say it for (Brown): Everybody, shut up,” Bryant told news reporters in a candid interview at practice Thursday. “Let us work, and at the end of the day, you’ll be happy with the result.”
His point is a simple one: The Lakers brought in Nash and Dwight Howard and Antawn Jamison and Jodie Meeks this season. They run a complicated version of the Princeton offense. They didn’t play much together during the preseason.
So, of course it’s going to take a while to mesh. And if you don’t get that, Bryant has some thoughts on your intellect.
“I just I don’t understand,” Bryant said. “The city here, for me, not trying to bite my tongue and not calling them dumb, which I kind of just did, but they’ve seen us win multiple championships here playing in an offense that was tough to learn. … They know how that stuff works. So for them to be so stupid now and say, ‘Let Steve dribble the ball around and create opportunities for everybody. Let Dwight post up. Or let me iso.’
“I won’t say idiotic, but it’s close.”
The latest loss was a tough one. The Lakers traveled from Los Angeles, where they lost their opener to the Dallas Mavericks, north to face the Portland Trail Blazers. The result was a 116-106 upset, with Nash bruising his leg in the process. He’s listed as doubtful for Friday’s game against the Los Angeles Clippers.
But the offense, Bryant says, isn’t the problem. The Lakers shot 50% from the field and out-rebounded the Blazers 45-30.
“We’re scoring a lot of points, efficiently,” said Bryant, who scored 30 points in the loss. “So, I mean, that’s not what we’re hanging our hats on in terms of why we’re losing the games. We’re not executing the defense, which has … [For more on Kobe Bryant to Lakers critics: 'Everybody, shut up', click here.]