Monday , Mar , 26 , 2007 Oly Sandor

Is Kobe Bryant The Greatest Guard Ever?

In this post, Oly reflects on Bryant’s place amongst the all-time great guards.

Is Kobe Bryant The Greatest Guard Ever?

{{The Take: Watching Kobe’s Quest For Five Straight 50+ Games. Is He The Greatest Guard Ever?}}

Kobe Bryant starts the game by absolutely going off on the Golden State Warriors, connecting for 17 points in the first nine minutes. So far, he’s hitting everything: fade away jump shots from both corners, tough drives to the basket, and impossible three-pointers.

It’s a remarkable display the greatest of Kobe-haters have to respect. Personal feelings aside, #24, in classic purple-and-gold, deserves unconditional props for his recent play.

 Watching Bryant forces me to reflect on a larger and more important question: is he the greatest perimeter player ever? You heard correctly. Is the current version of Kobe Bryant the greatest perimeter player to ever don an NBA jersey?

That’s what these games are really about-figuring out Kobe’s place in the hierarchy of hoops immortality. Here’s the answer: currently, he’s balling at a level none of the all-time great guards can match. None of them can touch him.

The old school, Oscar Robertson, Bob Cousy, and ‘Pistol’ Pete, lack Bryant’s athleticism. And Kobe Bean’s a better defender and all-round player than Mr. no-look, himself, Magic Johnson.

To me, the 2006-07 Bryant is an evolved and improved version of Michael Jordan. That’s right, evolved and improved. He’s bigger and more athletic than MJ. He’s a better defender. And he possesses a greater arsenal of offensive moves.

Of course, basketball purists will disagree with my opinion on Kobe. They’ll compare Jordan’s six NBA Titles to Bryant’s three. They’ll compare Jordan’s relationship with teammates to Bryant’s relationship with Shaq.

However, it says everything that Bryant, at just twenty eight years old, can be part of such a question. Oh yeah, he fell short of 50 points, scoring a ‘disappointing’ 43 in a win over Baron Davis and the Warriors.

{{Last Night’s Hi-Flying Highlight:}} Kevin Garnett’s game winning turnaround shot against the Trail Blazers. This play is further evidence that ‘The Big Ticket’ is still doing his thing for the Wolves. Too bad, he’s surrounded by underachieving journeymen, all of whom earn the mid-level exception.

{{Worth Watching:}} The rumor that Ron Artest will retire at season’s end. This could be the trigger that finally forces Sacramento to blow everything up and start that much needed rebuilding plan.