Why Kobe Bryant’s Flopping Comments Should Make Him an NBA Favorite

About a week-and-a-half ago, NBA fans got some words of wisdom from Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant. Speaking to Dave McMenamin of ESPNLosAngeles.com, Bryant spoke out against taking charges, citing injury concerns. Yet it was his comments about flopping that struck a greater chord.

Bryant condemned players who over-dramatize taking a charge, comparing them to fish out of water.  To said players, he asked a simple question: "Where are your balls at?"

Call me crazy, but I applaud The Black Mamba for his remarks and other NBA fans should too. The NBA today has too many stars who are more worthy of an Oscar than they are of a Larry O'Brien trophy.  Cleveland Cavaliers forward Anderson Varejao, for example, has made a career out of flying all around the hardwood and makes $7.7 million a year despite being injury prone and hit-or-miss on offense.

Sure, Varejao is fun to watch, but the fact that he gets paid most of that money for falling to the ground as though a top NFL linebacker hit him is just ridiculous.

That said, whatever happened to the NBA I grew up with? I started watching in the early '90s, when players weren't afraid to get tossed around and fall down for the good of the team. One of my earliest memories is watching Gary Payton, then of the Seattle SuperSonics, get knocked to the ground by someone much larger than he. He didn't complain about it, just got up and kept on playing the game.

Today, players act as though getting bumped or taking a charge is the worst thing in the world.  Though I understand Bryant's reasons for not planting his feet on defense, I can totally understand why he's upset with flopping. It's gotten so ridiculous today that something just had to be said, and Bryant just happened to be the one.

Anyway, I'm starting to ramble. My main point is that basketball is a physical game and no matter what players may try to do, they're going to accumulate a few bu...

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