Blog Entry

Kobe: Wade needs help

Posted on: March 5, 2010 1:02 am
MIAMI – After the Lakers sleep-walked through another in a string of sluggish, disinterested starts and lost to a Heat team just happy to be back at .500, did Kobe Bryant think it was panic time?


Did he think the Lakers needed anything dramatic to shake them from their doldrums on the road, where the defending champs are a pedestrian 9-8 this calendar year – with 10 of their next 13 games away from Staples?

Not really.

After scoring 39 points and hitting the overtime-forcing jumper in his sixth game back from a five-game absence with a nagging assortment of injuries, Bryant’s most astute observation was not about his team, but about the opponent.

The guy who needs a little help was wearing a Miami Heat jersey Thursday night.

“He had 14 assists, but there’s still too much on him,” Bryant said after Wade did it all – 27 points and 14 assists – in Miami’s 114-111 overtime victory over the Lakers. “He literally had to make every play, had to try to penetrate and pitch in. That can wear you down. So hopefully, he’ll get somebody who can step up and make plays and give him a couple of plays off.”

This is a sensitive topic in these parts, and also in a certain city on the Cuyahoga River where free agency D-Day looms. Every crucial Miami basket Thursday night came from Wade or resulted in a play he set up with his play-making dominance. You watch him will his .500 team to a victory over the defending champs, and you wonder: Damn, how good would he be with some help?

In fairness, he got more than usual Thursday night – 25 points from Quentin Richardson, who along with Wade had Ron Artest’s head on a swivel all night. Q-Rich made 7-for-11 from 3-point range, including one off an assist from Wade that gave the Heat a 99-97 lead with 11.1 seconds left. Instead of that being the game-winner, Kobe casually accepted the ensuing inbounds pass, dribbled the length of the court, and drilled the tying jumper over Wade with 3.3 seconds left.

Wade also didn’t have to make the two defensive plays of the night. Those were turned in by Jermaine O’Neal in the final minute of overtime – a chase-down block of Jordan Farmar and a drawn charge against Bryant with 18.7 seconds left. But in the closing minutes of the fourth quarter and overtime, nearly every one of Miami’s baskets and scoring opportunities came from Wade. Of course they did. Who else? 

“He’s a fantastic player,” Bryant said. 

Despite Artest’s interesting comment that the Lakers won’t see Miami again “until June” – what, June 2011? – Wade will have to settle for being fantastic player happy to get the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs. And there are no guarantees about that. 

“When I had the ball and gave it up to Q to hit that three, that shows my teammates that I’m about winning,” Wade said. “I’m not about, ‘I need to hit this shot because Kobe just hit a shot.’ To me, it’s not about that.”

No, Wade doesn’t want or need Kobe’s pity – and that’s not how Kobe meant it, anyway. Hey, not every superstar has the good fortune of playing with two 7-footers, one of the most dominant shutdown defenders in the league, and a guy named Lamar Odom coming off the bench. 

Not every team is so good it can sputter around for three quarters against one of the top three players in the world and still have a chance to win at the end. Cognizant of all this, the Lakers were appropriately nonplused by the evening’s events. The postgame comment that most closely approximated concern was this from Artest: “Unfortunately, I think we took this game lightly. … We have to start winning some games on the road. We have to.” 

The only other perceptible bristling in the Lakers’ postgame routine came from Phil Jackson, who just couldn’t pass up the opportunity to tweak the referees and invite a sizeable fine for the good of the team. With 29 seconds left in regulation and the Lakers leading 97-96, Bryant air-balled a 20-footer. Only neither Bryant nor Jackson thought it was self-induced. 

“Kobe shot an airball, but I’m sure he didn’t shoot an airball,” Jackson said. “It’s unconscionable that that call can’t be made at that point in the game.”

Informed of Jackson’s description, Bryant said, “That’s a good term. A good term. I actually stopped playing for a second. I thought I didn’t hear the whistle, honestly.” 

For Bryant, there’s always the next game, with plenty of reinforcements at the ready.

Since: May 7, 2008
Posted on: March 6, 2010 10:04 pm

Kobe: Wade needs help

If you knew what you were talking about, moron, you would know that all NBA defensive player team means absolutely NOTHING!  They normally give these out to players with big names, huge scoring averages, and other offensive stats.  For example, Ron Artest has been known as a big-time defender, and has higher steals per game avg as well as blocks compared to Kobe, however, he is only a 2 time all NBA defensive player.  How do you explain that?  I've seen way better defensive 2-guards in league overall, as well as in the time Kobe's been in the league. 

So just because he's been handed some meaningless awards doesn't mean anything.  He still rode the coat tails of others on the way to gaining his championships- something Jordan never had to do.

Since: Dec 26, 2009
Posted on: March 5, 2010 11:16 pm

Kobe: Wade needs help

The Heat roster minus Wade looks much worse than the Nets but Wade somehow has willed this team into playoff position.  I think that its a shame this guy doesnt get mentioned in mvp talks because he is definately the most valuable to his team out of anyone in the league.  I think everyone has forgotten how he averaged 35 points in the finals and carried his team to a championship in his 3rd year in the league, with the weakest supporting cast I can remember a winner ever having.  Antoine Walker plus 20 pounds, Alonzo Mourning out of retirement and post kidney transplant,  40 year old Gary Payton, and those were the good players. 

      Its a shame that this guy has to go all out like he does every night because he is already starting to break down physically, which only makes me have more respect for him.  He cares about winning so much he puts his body on the line every night just to win.  But what a nice change this star on a bad team is to what you normally see in the NBA which is that the star just quits.  Vince Carter, for example did it twice. 

Since: Feb 8, 2008
Posted on: March 5, 2010 10:13 pm

Kobe: Wade needs help

Not sure why people hate him so much. What makes them think they are any better than me??
I wonder why people have so much hate them. 
Very good comment, Voltaire.

Since: Feb 8, 2008
Posted on: March 5, 2010 10:11 pm

Kobe: Wade needs help

This guy like others, sounds like a hater!!

Since: Nov 28, 2007
Posted on: March 5, 2010 8:38 pm

Kobe: Wade needs help

His help is in Chicago. Just come to Chicago D-Wade. You know it's the best place for you to be lol.

Since: Mar 13, 2008
Posted on: March 5, 2010 6:24 pm

Kobe: Wade needs help

Don't worry Phil.  Those calls in Kobe's favor will be there during the playoffs(whether he deserves them or not).  You don't have to remind the refs.  They will get the memo from Dr. Buss or Mr. Stern when the time comes.

Since: Jan 14, 2009
Posted on: March 5, 2010 5:49 pm

Kobe: Wade needs help

Damn, how good would he be with some help?
Easy...he'd win a Championship just ask Mark Cuban.

Since: Oct 24, 2006
Posted on: March 5, 2010 5:20 pm

Kobe: Wade needs help

Assists depend on your teammates' ability to hit shots.

Wade made some good passes, sure,  but his teammates also made the shots.

Kobe could get 10 assists per if his teammates would actually make the shots he sets them up pfor. The Lakers, outside of Kobe, are not a team of shooters.

There should be a stat -- Assist Opportunities -- which would really count the number of times you set up pyour teammates... because getting the assist depends on your teammate making the shot, not on your ability to pass.

Since: Feb 10, 2010
Posted on: March 5, 2010 3:11 pm

Kobe: Wade needs help is plain and simple jealousy.  He is not disliked throughout the country.  On the contrary he is probably the most popular.  #1 in jersey sales in the US and worldwide in 2009.  Their are a select few who hate Kobe.  The hatred has to be based on jealousy and insecurity since they really do not know him personally.

Since: Sep 1, 2006
Posted on: March 5, 2010 2:49 pm

Kobe: Wade needs help

Well. I agree wade need help and this just one game which's not enough to say prove anything.........

OKAY. but I don't know what it tells us???????

Heat need to get a deal done or what you want to say

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