Top 10 Ways Kobe Bryant Copied Michael Jordan
Here are the Top 10 ways Kobe Bryant clearly and undeniably copied Michael Jordan.
HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: I know Laker fans hate to admit it, but to pretend Kobe didn't copy Michael Jordan is a joke. He patented his entire game after MJ and we got the evidence.
We all know Kobe Bryant is an amazing player and that he is one of the greatest of all-time. Those of us that are honest must also admit, he has a striking resemblance in a number of areas to Michael Jordan. This likeness is not an accident, nor do I think Kobe should be criticized for copying Jordan. An entire generation of basketball players attempted to copy MJ. Kobe was simply the only one with the talent to pull it off, but to pretend Kobe didn't copy a number of aspects of MJ's game is absurd. Here are the Top 10 ways Kobe Bryant copied Michael Jordan.
#10 The way they create space on the block.
MJ had a very distinct way of creating space in the low post when players were trying to body him up. If you watch Kobe's game down low you will see these same moves.
#9 The tongue.
Michael Jordan invented sticking out your tongue while you ball. It was one of his most signature trademarks. Although Kobe isn't as known for it, his tongue still pops out time after time by accident. This used to happen more and more at the beginning of Kobe's career and I think he's consciously tried to break the habit over the last few years. We've got picks in the gallery below to prove he's guilty of it though.
#8 The shirt bite.
First off, what is up with this whole biting the shirt thing? Kobe's been doing it for years, but Jordan used to do it too. Kobe claims he used to do it as a kid and I believe him. I'm betting though, like most of his stolen Jordan mannerisms, he's not even aware he saw MJ do it first.
#7 Winning the Slam Dunk Contest.
When Jordan did his runway dunk and won the second Slam Dunk contest in 1988 it was a huge moment. It is no accident that shortly after Kobe came into league he set his sights on winning his own Slam Dunk Championship. Kobe won the title in 1997, but by then much of the luster associated with the competition had worn off. Still, this is just another way Kobe patented his career after MJ.
#6 Approach to refs.
MJ was notorious for always working the refs. He rarely lost his temper or got technical fouls, but was widely known throughout the league as a nonstop whiner to the refs and a constant trash-talker on the court. Kobe has the exact same reputation.
#5 Approach to teammates.
Michael Jordan was never shy about being hard on his teammates. He might chastise them on national television on the court or challenge them to perform better through the media. This is one trait Kobe frequently utilizes to the Laker's benefit. Kobe has challenged Pau Gasol, Dwight Howard, Metta World Peace, and numerous other teammates over the years both on the court and through the press. It took him time to develop as a leader, but Kobe now utilizes some of MJ's stock trade approaches to leadership in the clubhouse.
#4 Mid-range fadeaway jumper.
Jordan should have put a government patent on his mid-range fadeaway jumper. He was the first to utilize this shot in the NBA and with much success due to his leaping ability. MJ developed this shot later in his career after he didn't want to have to attack the rim on every possession. An entire generation of ballers that followed adopted this move and added it into their game. Kobe Bryant perfected it better than any of the other imitators and now it is a shot commonly seen throughout not only the NBA, but also the NCAA too.
#3 Approach to sickness / injury
Jordan refused to let sickness slow him down and played one of the most dramatic games of his career with the flu in the NBA finals where he went off for 38 points leading the Bulls to a 90-88 win over the Utah Jazz. Kobe, not to miss a beat, wasn't going to let a torn Achilles keep him from making the final 2 free-throws of his 2013 season. It also appears to have revitalized Kobe into playing three more years in the NBA. He would never let an injury dictate when his career would end.
#2 Phil Jackson
Perhaps the biggest link between Kobe Bryan and Michael Jordan is the Phil Jackson connection. Kobe Came into the league in 1996, while Jordan was just a couple of years away from retirement. By the time Phil left, Kobe had developed into a star in LA averaging 22 PPG and had an influence over who Los Angeles hired as their next coach. Shaq and Kobe both were influential in acquiring Phil Jackson as the coach of the Lakers in 1999. Kobe wanted the same head coach that lead Jordan to a ring.
#1 Pretend humility
Both Jordan and Bryant are aware they are great. They also both have egos the size of the Empire State Building. They talk the right talk for the media, but their is a thin veil between their words and their true feelings. It is no secret hubris is a huge part of their makeup. Kobe uses the same make believe humility that Jordan used.
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