Kobe Bryant: Why He Will Never Eclipse Michael Jordan

Don’t get me wrong. I’m as much of a Kobe Bryant fan as the next dude. I was happy for the guy when he finally managed to tell Shaq “how his a** tastes” after winning his fourth and fifth championship rings these past two years. As a basketball fan, it was something that I’d been waiting for; to watch him come to the realization that he wasn't going to capture that elusive fourth title all by himself.

Even after Pau Gasol was gift-wrapped for him in February 2008, he was still stuck in his “the only way for us to win ball games in the fourth quarter is for me to make one ridiculous jumper after the other, so that’s what I’m gonna do” mindset.

Eventually, he understood that he could exploit the defense by dishing the ball off to Gasol when he received a double team, rather than taking a turn-around fadeaway from the corner. He learned how to make his teammates better while also picking his spots in which it was a benefit to the team for him to dominate offensively.

However, all of this change happened only to a certain extent; there are still many occasions when he reverts to his old habits and shoots the Lakers out of games (9-of-26 shooting in Game 1 of the '08 Finals for example). It’s been well-documented that the more shots Kobe takes, the less likely the Lakers are to actually win the game.

Of course, Michael Jordan shared some of these flaws with No. 24, having had a few forgettable Finals performances himself, such as the time he went 9-of-25 in a Game 7.

Regardless, these occasional no-shows were, as most of you know, an aberration. When the calendar flipped to June, Jordan consistently brought his A-game. Unfortunately though, the same cannot be said for the Black Mamba, as Michael gets the better of him in almost every statistical category.

As you can see, there’s a reason Michael Jordan never lost an NBA finals. He raised his scor...

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