Kobe says Lakers didn’t know who Lincoln was
by Chris Chase, USA TODAY Sports
The Los Angeles Lakers saw Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln recently, which gave Kobe Bryant a chance to make a joke at the expense of his teammates.
Dave McMenamin of ESPNLA.com tweeted Kobe’s one-liner:
Kobe on the team’s viewing of “Lincoln”: “I don’t know if the guys knew who he was … It came as a big shock to them when he was killed”
A variation of that joke has accompanied the release of films from Gone With The Wind to Titanic. (The South loses and the ship sinks.) It’s an oldie, but a goodie.
For a moment, Twitter delighted at the thought of grown men not knowing who Lincoln was. We reveled in the ignorance and tried to figure out the identity of our history-deficient basketball stars.
Antawn Jamison would remember Lincoln’s assassination, as he was a young child in 1865. But Pau Gasol is from Spain. Is he supposed to know about our past? Do you know what happened to Franco? Do you even know who Franco is? (Harris — he played for the Steelers.) Where does Metta World Peace fit into all of this? If you told me he thought Colonel Sanders was on the back of the penny, I’d believe you. If you told me he was a great scholar who helped Doris Kearns Goodwin edit Team of Rivals, I’d buy that too.
But then, tragically (different type of tragic), we got a follow-up report from McMenamin:
For those not adept in the art of sarcasm, Kobe was joking about his teammates not knowing who Lincoln is
Sigh. It was all a lie. I’m beginning to wonder if Kobe even watched the movie, as Spielberg doesn’t depict Lincoln’s assassination in the film.
It was almost as if McMenamin could feel our collective deflation after his clarification, so he issued one last redemptive tweet about the Lakers’ outing:
Dwight [Howard] on “Lincoln”: “It was long … Steve [Nash] fell asleep at one point. He was snoring”
This would have never happened under Phil Jackson.