(The rough draft of True Hoop' Henry Abbott's "Kobe Bryant's Best All-Time Dunks" was found. I was quite surprised when I read it. It really explained a lot. I was very confused when I read the final draft. Maybe you'll find this one better? )
That's what the video is called, and it is, of course, majestic.
The first two are amazing. The dunk 1:43 in, in the open court, is worth watching again and again. The dunk 1:15 into the video, on an alley-oop pass from Brian Shaw, against the Sixers, is one of my favorite dunks ever, by anybody.
But allow me a moment to also totally miss the point of the whole video, and insult your intelligence while doing so.
Yes, it's perfect, as a snapshot of athletic and creative greatness. But I know I wasn't the only one who was struck by all the open big men in this short video. At least I think I'm not the only one who thought so, but I won't verify this "fact," you'll just have to believe me because I am a credible journalist. The pattern plays itself out three times in just ten dunks. If you know your math, that's 30% of one "Top Ten" list made up by a website, picked out of thousands of plays over Bryant's 13 year career, in which he's played 1123 regular season and playoff games. "Just three times in ten dunks" would have been a better way to word it, but no reader is that dumb to not see how stupid I sound bashing Kobe for this. So "three times in just ten dunks" and "all of the open big men" is just exaggerated wording I used to influence your incomprehensible and torpid brains. Pedestrians.
In the third highlight, 20 seconds in, we see Bryant beat his man on the perimeter. Tim Duncan shuffles over to help, leaving Shaquille O'Neal wide open under the hoop.
The basketball gods, and Tex Winter, all want Bryant to hit O'Neal with a pass for the dunk. They have all admitted this to me in interviews. They have all mentioned this specific play. Especially the basketball gods, you know who they are. Right?
When people talking about making the right basketball play, that's what they're talking about. You know who "they" are. It's me, myself, and I, the basketball gods, and Tex Winter. There's only one right play. I mean, I can't dunk and you can't dunk (so you'll agree), and passing has to be the right thing to do every time. If I was able to jump like that, it might be a different story. I might imagine what it would be like to know I'm going to dunk and score, but I can't, so passing is the correct play. The "right basketball play." Remember, I know these things because I just do (and so do the gods).
Duncan will be either absent or late in trying to stop it, and may well get himself a foul. But there's no way the Lakers aren't getting two points. Absolutely no way the Lakers aren't scoring! I said that twice so you can remember how foolish I seem in my next paragraph.
Instead, Bryant elevates over Duncan and makes a very tough shot (and video highlight history). It's great! But if you run that play 1,000 times, it's better for the Lakers if Bryant passes. Even though the first time there was no way the Lakers aren't scoring! Really, that would make the dunk the "better" play 1,000 times. You're too half brained to see the logic in that though. Let me tell you how. The whole point of offense to score. Notice, I said that "Duncan will be either absent or late in trying to stop it, and may well get himself a foul." I just admitted Timmy had no chance of stopping Kobe's or the Lakers' points. Even better, Duncan gets a foul on him, but Kobe should have given up a sure thing and pass on a chance to get the Spurs' best player into possible foul trouble (pun intended). I'm so smart, I just disproved my own theory so you didn't have to (as if you could). Stay with me. The play wasn't run 1,000 times. It was run once, and Bryant made the right play that time. Who knows? He may have passed it under different circumstances over this imaginary 1,000 times that this play was run, but let's not get into that. I say he didn't pass once, so he never, ever in 10; 100; 1,000; or 1,000,000 times will pass the ball. Did you get all of that?
About a minute into the video, Bryant is approaching the hoop and Steve Nash runs over in an attempt to take the charge. Yes, Bryant can jump over a man that size. But Kwame Brown could not be more alone under the hoop. Rather than dishing, however, Bryant scales the little Canadian infomercial celebrity. He should have passed it to Kwame Brown. A man so notorious for blowing easy shots and fumbling passes, that Lakers fans call him "Stone Hands." Did I also mention it was a playoff game against the much better (at the time), and hated Phoenix Suns?
Near the end of the video, just before the two-minute mark (in a Wizards game against the Wizards in Las Vegas! Maybe I mean in a pre-season game against the Wizards in Las Vegas! But I'll purposely make that typo to leave out the fact that it was a exhibition game of no consequence when Kobe Bryant was about 18 or 19 years old) Bryant draws three defenders (while he's already elevating for the dunk), creating two open teammates ... neither of whom he seems to notice. Never mind that it was a pre-season game (oops, that's 108 more games!) with about 1.5 seconds left when he decided to dunk. A pass very well would have run the clock out when these big men got "open," but I say passing is the right thing to do every time. So, because of what I say, Bryant should have risked passing the ball with time running out in a meaningless game.
It's not like Bryant doesn't understand basketball. You could come up with as many highlights or more where he does make this pass. (I'll just never link these, unless I can spin it to show how Kobe's scared to shoot the ball or how he's only passing to change our minds. In turn being more selfish.) He gets it, and so do I, but I will focus on this highlight list to bash him and treat my readers like morons. Bryant knows what he's doing. He should, the man is a 4-time Champ, All NBA 1st Teamer, All_NBA Defender, MVP, All-Star, and gold medalist, whom leads his team in assists every year. There's value -- in intimidation of opponents, in firing up teammates the the crowd, in leadership, in sneaker sales, in living your dreams and in a zillion other things -- in dunking the hell out of the ball. You know, all of those things that go into being a super duper professional MVP type, Champion basketball player. Sometimes, even when you have an open teammate 3 times in a list made up of ten plays picked from thousands of plays over 1231 pre-season, regular season, and playoff games.
But those whispers about Bryant being selfish, that have simmered throughout his career ... Whispers that I don't care to verify or quote. Remember that I am a credible journalist with integrity...they don't come from nowhere. They just come from me, and I'm not saying nothing. You'll just have to believe me. I am Henry Abbott and all of you are my puppets. So when I get over 1000+ comments, I'll simply put out an explanation in which I'll basically call Lakers' fans a bunch of babies, though even the Kobe haters called me out in the comments for my BS. Then I'll prove that Kobe is selfish by stating Phil Jackson and Tex Winter said so in PRINT! But I won't quote that either!
You just don't get it. I am a Laker hating Blazer fan, a powerful blogger, and I do this all of the time and you all fall for it. The summer is slow, so I have to play games and amuse myself. I purposely wrote this like a jackass to encourage your click throughs. It's a bet with someone (who know who you are), and I'm up.
(In case you haven't realized this, the words in italics are not the words of Henry the Abbot[t]. I have added to them to make his post a little better, and possible shed some light into what he really meant. It's all in fun. Henry has a right to his "opinion" even if he is wrong. Unfortunately, his incorrect attacks have influence, and come from nowhere. It's not a Lakers or Kobe fan thing. We all get it, he doesn't like Kobe. It's about Henry's so-called professionalism. These constant childish pulpit preaching hate rants that prove nothing but his dislike for a certain individual are written to influence his wide readership to agree with these poorly thought out posts just because he thinks it. He didn't offer "proof." He offered his deranged take on them. I would think the same if it were KG or Paul Pierce being slammed. If Abbott didn't feel some sense of responsibility to journalism and fairness, unlike Bill Simmons, then it might be different. Since he does, he should be held to the same set of ethics he holds others to.)