Latest News / Aug 27, 2014 / 3:00 pm

Kobe Says He’d Rather Miss 30 Shots Than Miss His First 9 And Stop Shooting

Kobe Bryant

Kobe Bryant (Richard Mackson, USATODAY)

An aging, wistful Kobe Bryant is the quotable gift that keeps on giving. We’ve already touched on several anecdotes from Chris Ballard’s Sports Illustrated cover story and Gotham Chopra’s documentary on the Los Angeles Lakers legend, but this one might the best yet.

In yet another must-read post on Bryant from Ballard, the writer provides us Kobe stories that didn’t make the final cut of his piece in SI. Naturally, it’s courtesy of Chopra, director of upcoming Showtime documentary “Kobe Bryant’s Muse.”

Gotham Chopra, the director of “Kobe Bryant’s Muse”, an upcoming documentary on Bryant, told a story about being with Kobe and watching the Nets and the Heat play. Recounts Chopra, “Deron Williams went like 0-for-9. I was like, ‘Can you believe Deron Williams went 0-9?’ Kobe was like, ‘I would go 0-30 before I would go 0-9. 0-9 means you beat yourself, you psyched yourself out of the game, because Deron Williams can get more shots in the game. The only reason is because you’ve just now lost confidence in yourself.’

Classic, classic Kobe.

We get what’s he’s saying: Your confidence can’t be shaken no matter what. The greatest scorers of all-time have a short memory and believe their next shot is going in even if the previous 10 have missed the mark. Bryant has felt that way his entire career, so much so that it’s become the rallying cry of his detractors. So this story isn’t at all surprising, but just confirms what we already knew about Bryant.

But is it the right mentality? We don’t have a fraction of Kobe’s basketball understanding or playing ability, but have always believed that making more shots than you miss is critical to team success. If Bryant or another superstar continues shooting on a night when he clearly doesn’t have it and does so to placate his sometimes debilitating inner-drive, that’s clearly to the detriment of his team. It’s not like Kobe has played with replacement-level teammates over the years, either. Pau Gasol, Lamar Odom, Derek Fisher and the like are more than capable of picking up his slack, and Bryant is more than gifted enough as a passer to find them easy looks.

But this is the thinking of the old-guard – that superstars are superstars because they shoot through slumps as opposed to making the right for their team in the moment. Michael Jordan felt that way and LeBron James doesn’t, a fact often used as a tipping point in discussions supporting or dismissing the latter.

We think one way is right and one way is wrong, and Bryant disagrees with us as to which stance is which. That’s fine, and his attitude on the matter has helped him reach heights reserved for a handful of basketball greats. But one wonders if he’d have enjoyed even more success if he’d made a concerted effort to get his teammates involved after missing his first nine shots as opposed to missing 21 more.

Would you rather go 0-9 or 0-30?

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  • Onaje

    Do you have the same attitude when Charles Barkley, Larry Bird, Reggie Miller and the like express the same thing about being gun shy and how to keep shooting and trust that your shots will fall when it matters?

    Kobe isn’t some Basketball Cretin sucking the fun out of the game for others or running around unaware of his impact. He was absolutely right about Deron Williams…If you are a scorer and an All-star talent and team leader…the ancillary players on your team are looking for you to do you, so it makes the game easier on them…

    This isn’t Pee Wee league ball where everyone gets a turn. NBA is where roles are more defined (sometimes to the detriment of the game itself as it can be limiting to some players’ development).

  • Steven Ford

    Let’s see…MJ has 6 rings. Kobe has 5 rings The 2 most successful guards in NBA history. Their attitudes mirror each others and you wanna know which attitude is better 0-9 or 0-30? What a stupid question

  • Kingsley

    If you are the best player on the team, and opponent gives you decent looks, then yes, you keep shooting even if you end up getting 0/30. If you stop taking decent looks because you are missing, then you are taking away your team’s flow of the game either. If you believe you are going to hit the next one (which is the mentality you should have), then shoot those open looks.

  • stef

    kobe as usual is right. tony parker didn’t stop him after being 0-10 or something similar during PO versus miami… and everybody know as it ended

  • SoulChorea

    This is why dude hits so many clutch shots. He knows it’s going in and will take that shot, even if he went 0-345 before that lol

  • James Graves

    If you’re ;a decent player you will never go 0/30. You take your shots in the rhythm of the game and some of them are going to fall. You don’t force 30 shots. You take the shots as they come to you. Course I played point so I was a bit more about the team than Kobe is.

  • busherbee

    As long as he has the leadership ability of not trying to regain his shot when someone else on the team might be hot and able to help the team win the game.

  • http://www.bloggingfromparadise.com/ Ryan Biddulph

    The best people in their profession, on the planet, try, try and try again, over the course of days, and years.

    Go 0 for 50, and when you have the Rings at the end of the year, nobody will remember the 0 for 50 game. Or if someone does, it’ll be a good natured jab when you’re being inducted into the Hall of Fame.

  • Jacky

    Yeah because you’re in the NBA right?

  • TPC

    Did he really mention Derek Fisher as more than capable of picking up the slack for scoring?? This guy lost all credibility.

  • yastrux

    lol, sorry, we didnt recognize you.
    tell us again how you are better teamplayer then kobe

  • Jerry Arthur Newcomb

    The last statement was STUPID–> “But one wonders if he’d have enjoyed even more success if he’d made a concerted effort to get his teammates involved after missing his first nine shots as opposed to missing 21 more.” <– as Kobe never actually went 0 for 30!! DUH! Scheesh!

  • Dean

    Good shooters shoot and always think the next ones going in. Doc Rivers said something similar about Jamal Crawford last season when he’d missed his first few shots in the first half….”He makes one and he think’s he’s hot” ;)