Phil Jackson: Kobe Bryant’s Attitude Towards Training Surpassed Michael Jordan’s

Ever since Phil Jackson assumed control of the New York Knicks front office this past March, one question above all has dogged Carmelo Anthony: How would his triangle stint stack up against those of Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant?

Anthony will never be considered in the same class as the other two, of course. The implication has long been that, in the pantheon of Jackson cornerstones, the order is as follows: Jordan, Bryant enormous drop-off.

But, according to Jackson, Kobe has MJ beat in at least one important respect: dedication to training.

Asked by the New York Post’s Steve Serby whether Anthony might live up to the triangle precedents set by his Hall of Fame brethren, Jackson responded thusly:

No. No one can approach that. I don’t expect anybody to be able to model their behavior after that, although Kobe modeled his behavior a lot about Michael Jordan, but he went beyond Michael in his attitude towards training, and I know Mike would probably question me saying that, but he did.

Whoa, Nelly.

Now, to be fair, Richard Simmons has a really, really good training regimen. That doesn’t mean Richard Simmons is any good at basketball.

Ergo, just because Kobe Bryant had the better off-court or offseason work ethic doesn’t necessarily make him better than His Airness—even if Jordan spent two years of his life playing baseball, which, as we all know, falls right between Halo 2 and bowling on the exercise-strenuousness scale.

I’m kidding! I’m kidding! It’s obviously between bowling and lawn bowling.

Just how nuts-o is Kobe’s work ethic? Take this Reddit anecdote from a man who claims to have been Bryant’s one-time trainer, talking about meeting up with the mercurial shooting guard during Team USA’s pre-Olympics training camp back in 2012 (via former SB Nation columnist Andrew S...

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