The Los Angeles Lakers are arguably the worst team in the NBA right now. The they currently sit at 2-15, good for last place in the Western Conference and lost to the previously winless Philadelphia 76ers on Tuesday night. At the center of it all, Kobe Bryant is having the worst season of his career storied career, and Zach Lowe of ESPN outlined that he does not think those two things are unrelated on his latest podcast.
"I referred to the Lakers as a vaudeville freakshow like two weeks into last season because it's like going back into a time machine," Lowe began. "When Kobe is on the floor this year they don't play basketball as the NBA knows it, they play a different sport that is really bad, and that is really good for the Lakers losing enough games to keep their draft pick; and then when Kobe goes out they begin to resemble a normal basketball team again."
Some fans and Kevin Durant will bristle at this criticism of the five-time champion and future Hall of Famer, but Lowe understands how great Bryant was, he just doesn't agree with the way he is playing now.
"Look, he;s a legend, the whole organization kowtows to whatver he wants to do. And look, they are going to suck no matter what this year, so there is an argument, the fans want to see it, the fans want to see Kobe go one on one and cross dudes over and jack 30 footers, but this isn't a carnival. This is the NBA, you're an NBA team. You have time invested in D'Angelo Russell and Jordan Clarkson and Julius Randle and Larry Nance, Jr. and blah blah blah blah, and you can't just hand over 82 games to this sideshow. It's crazy to me. It's crazy."
Bryant has played better to start of the Lakers' game against the Washington Wizards on Wednesday, but for most of the season Lowe has been spot on. For a 37-year old shooting guard in the midst of the least efficient season of his career to use up 29.8% of his team's possessions is "crazy." It remains to be seen if sanity (the way Bryant played in the first half against the Wizards) wins out in the end.