All it took was Kobe Bryant opening his mouth and and reminding so many why they hate him in the first place. I’d throw the quote in here, but it will only feed the dumbest argument this side of “Should the Bulls match the Omer Asik offer sheet?” I laughed initially too, MJ. It’s cool. I was fortunate to have been old enough to remember the original Dream Team and just know how much they meant to the game of basketball. They were revolutionary and helped grow the game that David Stern & his imbecile owners are capitalizing on today.
Who would win if we could somehow take this year’s squad and throw them in a time machine and send them back to ’92? Who gives a shit?! Seriously, is there a more pointless debate to have in sports right now? I didn’t think so. Kobe’s words (and the Dream Team’s predictable responses) is beyond lazy and typical of the remedial way ESPN and most people cover sports nowadays.
Everyone and everything has to be the next big thing, or the next whoever. Instead of letting players develop and forge their own path during their careers, they’re instantly tied to someone as the next…
With Kobe, it’s different. He has had the Jordan obsession ever since he had the sunglasses on his head announcing that he was forgoing college to go to the NBA. His words are all about vaulting himself onto MJ’s level, at least in his delusional mind. He has an inferiority complex that will never go away even if he wins his 6th NBA title. I once wrote about how Kobe’s career and public image would be different if he hadn’t been so consumed with the MJ model, and I believe he wouldn’t be as hated as he is outside of L.A. County if he had just been his own guy from ’96 on.
But the media and fans (myself included, of course) are the real culprits here. When news broke of Bryant’s claims, all of us had a tweet or thought about who would win in the mythical game. As if anything could really be accomplished by proclaiming who would win a fake game that only our imaginations could see.
Were the Dream Team’s point guards too old-sick (Magic) & injured (Stockton)? Could this current team guard Malone, Barkley, Robinson & Ewing? How would anyone check ’92 Jordan when he was unquestionably at the peak of his talents? Would Kobe shoot this team out of the game because of his Jordan complex? How would Pippen guard Durant & LeBron?
Guess what? None of it matters. It’s all verbal diarrhea and wasted breath. The Dream Team meant so much to the game, and globalized it to become as ridiculously popular as it is today. And instead of hating on this year’s team or claiming for sure that they’d run the Dream Team out of the gym, why not just let them have this moment to show the world yet again who the king of roundball is?
The only thing that matters in any of this silliness is taking pride in the fact that the United States of America owns the sport of basketball. Even though I loathe most of the players on this current squad, I take pride in knowing that we’re about to make the world our basketball bitch again. But as far as comparing teams, that’s for narcissistic idiots to do. And for an instant after Kobe’s comments, I was a part of that group.