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  • I've seen guys tried to guard him.

  • Tough guys, great defense.

  • Bump him and everything.

  • And he just wanted to do it to everyone.

  • Literally.

  • If you were, if you was the worst player on the team, he wanted to kill you.

  • Also on the court.

  • What was it like the first time you had to guard him?

  • My first time guarding Kobe.

  • 15 14.

  • I was playing with Shaheen Holloway, Shamgar Wells for Coach Kevin Jackson in Providence.

  • And I remember everybody is saying this is the next Grant Hill.

  • And I remember he had about 32 first three quarters.

  • And I think you know my brother Shannon.

  • Everybody's garden on.

  • Then I got in the game and I started to guard him.

  • I told him this, but he said he didn't remember.

  • I think he had about six points on me, but he said he got.

  • He said he gave me 40.

  • So But you got to see at a very early age, right in a you bought high school ball.

  • Yeah.

  • What kind of challenge he would be to guard as a defender.

  • Do you recall yourself being like, man, this This is This is more of a challenge than I thought it was gonna be.

  • Not more of a challenge, you know?

  • I mean, I was one of the most fearless killers, so a killer is not really looking at anyone as a challenge.

  • I never looked at anyone challenge now, numbers would say different, and that's okay.

  • But internally, I never looked at anyone as a challenge.

  • It's just it's just the mindset you gotta have.

  • You know, you gotta feel like you're the best, you know, even though it might not be true when you have to go into the game with that mindset on, I always went into the game with that mindset.

  • I even told Kobe one time My brother RP Kobe.

  • I even told them in Houston I was like, You can't see me.

  • E was like, You can't You ain't got nothing for me.

  • But it was just in that mind, you know, not bending right on.

  • Kobe pushed me to the limit in terms of that, because every game, you know, he would play so well.

  • It was extremely tough garden Kobe extreme because he can shoot, you know he can shoot and and then he could also just drive and he could and he was strong.

  • Mid range, extremely intelligent.

  • It was It was really hard guard him.

  • It was really tough.

  • What would you do defensively?

  • Like schematically, You know, whether it was yourself individually or as teams, um, to try toe limit anything that he could do as best as you could.

  • Well, for me personally, I was always had the upper hand on defense.

  • There wasn't many people that was bringing what I bring to the table, so I never needed to change.

  • I never watched film to try to stop someone.

  • Either he was gonna give me 40 or, you know, he wasn't It was that simple.

  • You know, I played against guys who wasn't as mentally focused and just wouldn't even play in the game.

  • But, you know, Kobe was the guy that he wanted.

  • He wanted to play, and then in practice, that's where we got a chance to really, you know, see each other a lot.

  • And that was fun.

  • Is there one particular back and forth that you guys had that sticks out in your mind?

  • We had.

  • We had we had a lot.

  • We had a lot of them.

  • And that's how we kind of became friends because I don't I've never, ever seen Kobe off the court in my life, but we became kind of friends on the court.

  • We would just talk when we see each other because he knew I was bringing it and he liked it.

  • And when we got into on the same team, you know, we just we just we just saw out of I It was it was more like a mutual respect.

  • He loves the game so much, and that's why I appreciate him so much because, you know, we could see eye to eye brothers just from how we compete.

  • The language of competition is really interesting.

  • How we clicked clearly the whole mamba mentality thing.

  • Part of it was, you know, he took no prisoners, right?

  • Like, do you recall like a moment in practice where some guy, one of your teammates, got the brunt of, like, one of his tongue lashings or one of his just kind of episodes where he was just gonna show somebody what he was made of?

  • Well, he needed Thio find something to motivate him every day.

  • So he's coming into practice.

  • He's the best.

  • And he has toe bring it out here.

  • And he wants competition.

  • It reminds me when I was in Indiana and when I was in really good shape, it was really hard for, you know, for people to do a lot with me.

  • So I would just practice with £40 weight vest just to give myself more competition.

  • Sometimes I practice where the ankle weights.

  • That's what Kobe was doing.

  • He wants.

  • He wants you to feel so disrespected.

  • Where you going?

  • To give you 100%.

  • You?

  • No one would say it was too much.

  • Not me.

  • That championship team.

  • He didn't have to say much, but it was It was It was certain guys that he wanted Thio.

  • He wanted them to be ready.

  • You know, even guys like Sasha, he was always on Sasha.

  • Because you gotta think about the guys that not even playing guys on the bench.

  • So although you might be sad one day, Kobe don't care about that.

  • He wants you to bring it in practice.

  • Hey, don't care.

  • You didn't play for 20 games.

  • He don't care.

  • What you gonna do with your contract?

  • Looking like he wants you to bring it.

  • Eso Sometimes it could be overwhelming, but I always thought it was coming from, you know, the right place in that Siri's where you guys won against Boston.

  • You know, obviously you had that tremendous run in Game seven.

  • You had a great game Seven as you were watching him go through.

  • Maybe the offensive struggles like what was.

  • Do you remember what, like his messaging was during that game while you were trying to make that come back and call your way back?

  • Kobe Is Maura off action person action items what we're doing right now.

  • But I wasn't worried about Kobe.

  • Even though Kobe didn't play great.

  • I wasn't worried about Kobe.

  • Kobe had a not a great shooting first half, but when he came into the second half, he had a big here to jump up.

  • He got fouled.

  • He made a layup, 17 rebounds.

  • He made a great pass to me, right?

  • Kobe played great.

  • I wasn't worried about Kobe.

  • Kobe was getting maximum effort.

  • When you think about this Boston Siri's, he's being guarded by Paul past 20 Alan Ray Allen.

  • This is a great defensive team, so but Kobe did was say, I'm just gonna get balls out effort.

  • And then it translated to his leg was a little tired.

  • A lot of his chops was short.

  • The game was only 83 79.

  • You know, that was a low scoring game.

  • So with that being said, he he did so much of the intangibles.

  • You know, that kind of covered up for anything else.

  • Like, was there a guy that when you were with the Lakers, that every time he went up against that guy you knew he wanted to kill that guy?

  • No.

  • It was really easy for Kobe.

  • He wanted Thio kill everyone, and that's what he did.

  • You know, I've seen guys trying to guard him.

  • Tough guys, great defense, bump him and everything.

  • And he just wanted to do it to everyone.

  • Literally.

  • If you were, if you was the worst player on the team, he wanted to kill you.

  • Also on the court, he's like, kind of like Matt Barnes with Steve Jackson, um, and and Johnny Salmon's where I always gonna got the best player.

  • And Kobe would also take the challenge.

  • I want to God the best player that didn't happen much.

  • But guys like his brother Dwyane Wade, his brother LeBron James, those games he was like, I want to guard him a little bit eso he always wanted to take even sometimes Durant.

  • But you know, those guys kind of kind of tall and LeBron was kind of big.

  • So sometimes I have to go, LeBron.

  • But he always wanted those challenges all the time without blinking.

  • And I Thanks for watching ESPN on YouTube for live streaming sports and premium content.

  • Subscribe to ESPN plus.

I've seen guys tried to guard him.

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Metta Sandiford-Artest on how he bonded with Kobe Bryant through how they compete | ESPN

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    林宜悉 posted on 2021/01/26
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