“Kobe Bean Bryant goes up for a jump shot out on the right wing,” Rose told Grantland.com. “I contest the jump shot. Kobe lands on my foot. He hobbles off and actually misses the next game. If it was up to me, he should’ve just missed the whole series. I would’ve had a championship ring and it would’ve been no harm, no foul.”
What comes around goes around.
Jalen Rose never won that NBA championship. Then, in 2006, he was again torched by Kobe Bryant en route to his historic 81-point game. It must have been a creepy sense of de ja vu for Jalen. Looking at the big picture, his comments recently don’t seem so venomous.
Yes, there’s an unwritten rule in sports that you don’t try and intentionally injure another player. But when a guy is hot, the idea is to make him feel you, right? Pain is part of the game…whether it’s a drive to the basket or a pull-up jumper. So where do you draw the line between hurting someone and injuring someone?
In the heat of the moment, you can’t.
If you’ve played basketball at a high level, then you know that there’s always somebody who plays it at an even higher one. When you’re getting torched by a guy more talented than you, there’s an animal instinct that kicks in. You’ll do anything in that moment to stop the beatdown you’re getting.
Does that excuse cheap shots like the ‘Bruce Bowen step-under-the-shooter’ move? no. Especially considering that Bryant only had 2 points at the time of the incident (in just nine minutes of play).
Nevertheless, this kind of thing happens in the playoffs.
If Jalen Rose was telling the truth (and not just trying to make headlines) then I forgive him…and you know what? so does Kobe.
If Bryant was in that same position, he’d try and take a guy out too.
In NBA history, it’s about winning at all costs.
As Magic Johnson once said, you can always be friends after the season.