Smack / Jun 17, 2014 / 10:30 am

Kobe Bryant On Tim Duncan Matching His Five Rings: “I’m Not OK With That”

Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan

Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan (Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports)

After Tim Duncan won his fifth NBA Title Sunday night, he tied Kobe Bryant for the number of championships. If you think Bryant is immune to the seemingly trivial competition between the two rivals, then you don’t really know Kobe.

Bryant was in Brazil on ESPN this week to cheer on the U.S. Men’s soccer team in the 2014 FIFA World Cup. He addressed their coach, Jurgen Klinsmann, and his recent comments about Bryant being overpaid to Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News:

“I thought it was pretty funny. I thought it was pretty comical actually,” Bryant said. “I see his perspective. But the one perspective that he’s missing from an ownership point of view is that you want to be part of an ownership group that is rewarding its players for what they’ve done while balancing the team going forward. If you’re another player in the future and you’re looking at the Lakers organization, you want to be a part of an organization that takes care of its players while at the same time planning for the future. Jurgen is a coach, a manager. He’s not a GM or owner of the franchise. When you look at it from that perspective, it changes a little bit. But you probably could have used another player as an example.”

So Klinsmann calls him overpaid and Kobe responds in measured tones. That wasn’t the case when it came to Duncan’s fifth ring, matching Kobe’s total.

“If you ask me if I’m okay with Tim doing it, I’m not,” Bryant said. “I’m not okay with that.”

Of course he isn’t! Only MJ was more pathological about real or imagined slights, and Duncan — the best power forward in history at this point — tying Kobe for rings has got be tough to handle. Not to mention the fact the Spurs are in a much better position to compete for another title next year, which could see Duncan overcoming Kobe’s ring totals and would rewrite the first decade and a half of the millennium, perhaps placing Duncan on a higher historical pedestal than Bryant.

That is going to grate at Kobe, and you can be sure he’s stewing before next season, hoping he’s healthy enough to get the Lakers back in title contention, even if all signs say otherwise.

(Los Angeles Daily News)

Who has had a more dominant career, Kobe or Duncan?

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  • Saleem Rainman

    Duncan is already on a higher pedestal than Kobe for his generation after that 5th. No need for a 6th for him to get there. 1 or 2 more seasons of contending while Kobe is trying to carry a medicore laker team to the playoffs wud be the final nails in the coffin

  • CousinVinny75

    Anyone who isn’t a total Kobe homer or media hack recognizes that Duncan was already ahead of Kobe

    Duncan has the edge in League MVPs in the regular season, League MVPs in the post-season, in career win shares, and the incredible consistency of basically winning 50+ games every year in the league other than the lockout season. And never missing the post-season.

    And while at his peak never played with someone as talented as Shaq.

  • SweetdickWilly

    Tim will likely pass Kobe with at least 1 title. Kobe’s best chance left with Dwight.

  • Meredith

    Keep stewin in the jealousy, Kobe.
    Tim is miles ahead of you in the class dept.

    THRILLED for Duncan and the Spurs. Here’s hoping Kobe watches Duncan take in a sixth title next year from his couch.

  • D Hyrum Vaughn

    David Robinson, bro

  • Eric

    This is missing the most recent chip for Duncan, but it clearly shows that he is ahead of Kobe in everything.

  • Marcus Villainous Swift Higgin

    See if k one ass didn’t want to be the star he’d have like 10 rings if he would have kept shaq

  • Ceo McClain

    Every one is smocking crack if you are comparing duncan to bryant. Thats like comparing mike to Chamberlin. You cant!! Two totally different positions with 2 totally different aspects. Duncan is the best power forward. Bryant is vying for the best PLAYER. ..

  • Renneboy Cerda

    Robert Horry and BILL RUSSELL is LAUGHING right now..=)