Okay, okay don't get your panties all bunched up about this blog title. Y'all know as well as I do that Kobe Bryant (post Eagle, Colorado and Laker championship squad blow up) is a very polarizing homeboy these days. There are only two camps - you love him or you hate him. Ol Tyrone finds himself in the 'Hate 'em' (or is that hater??) camp and no more so than after his mean mugging, fist pumping, jersey popping, and stagger swaggering during the Lakers' first round series with the Phoenix Suns. Now don't get it twisted, I've got no love for those streaky Suns either but I have to admit that series did make me a big fan of Raja Bell (the fact that he used to play for my boyz the Sixers is besides the point...) - that and the fact that he keeps showing up big in the playoffs to date...
That Lakers/Suns Game 5 clothes line yoke that he put on Kobe after getting elbowed in the face for the 22nd time was an all-time classic. Course, there was Kobe picking himself up off the floor with that crackhead smirk, making an obvious gesture that he was just brushing off that Hall of Fame yolk but what pissed me off more were his post game comments about Bell:
"Does he know me? Do I know this guy? I don't know this guy," Bryant said. "I might have said one word to this guy. I don't know this kid. I think he overreacts to stuff.
"We go out there, we play, and when we play during the season, we play each other. That's it. I don't know this kid. I don't need to know this kid. I don't want to. We go out there, we play the game and leave it at that. Maybe he wasn't hugged enough as a kid. I look at him a little bit, he gets a little insecure or something. I don't know."
Baltimore Sun sports columnist David Steele wrote a tight commentary about the incident and the fact that if Kobe 'doesn't know' Bell, he might need to get checked out for early onset Alzheimers. The two have a history and if I were Bell (especially after hitting that insane three in Game 5 of the Suns/Clippers series to put the game into double OT), I'd be wearing a shirt with a glossy of Kobe going down at the end of that yolk and the words: "Know me now? How's the vacation going?" or since it seems we have the makings of a must see match up next season everytime the Lakers and the Suns lace 'em up, he could just paraphrase that line from The Game's "Hate It or Love It" cut - "...I ain't going nowhere so you can get to know me."
Still don't know Raja Bell, Kob? It's pretty easy - all you have to do is turn on the TV, homey.