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Since the Lake Show clinched their 5th championship of the decade, legacy talk has become the daily topic du jour. So I think before we put the 2010 season in a time capsule and jump in our DeLorians after last night's NBA Draft, we should put some finality on the season.
Over the weekend, I read two separate columns reflecting on Kobe's legacy at age 31, which would be like publishing Dakota Fanning's autobiography. Although both prescribe to the 11th Commandment, "Thou Shalt Not Compare to His Airness", Chicago natives Chis Broussard and Michael Wilbon have opposing perspectives on Kobe Bryant's legacy.
Wilbon's expectations for Kobe Bryant are unattainable. If you've ever seen the disdain on Wilbon's face discussing Kobe Bryant's rank on the all-time hierarchy you'd think he was discussing selling cocaine to Len Bias. For Wilbon, it seems the only way for Kobe to even be in discussion as the greatest Laker in team history he'd have to win a Winter Olympics gold for figure skating(Reason #1 for Lebron to steer clear of Jordan's shadow in Chicago).
You should have seen the reaction from Wilbon when Magic conceded Kobe was the greatest Laker. It was akin to the five stages of grief. As a 6'9 point guard Magic is without a doubt the Most Unique Laker of All-time but you can't take anything away because Kobe is a prototypical 6'6 guard. If Kobe were a 6'6 center with the same resume, you can imagine how his skill set would be lauded as comparable to Magic's. It's why Lebron has been minted the "Best Player in the NBA" so prematurely, or why President Obama is so revered. A 6'8, 250 pound power forward composed of muscle not donuts and a black President from Hawaii is appealing to the mind.
I even had the rare conversation with someone who suggested individual achievements were what separated Kobe from Shaq, Olajuwon, and John Stockton. What accomplishment does Kobe Bryant have under his belt?