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Report: Kobe Bryant didn’t tell Mike D’Antoni that he was going to Germany

Kobe Bryant and Mike D’Antoni have had an interesting relationship. Kobe idolized D’Antoni when Mike played in Italy professionally, where Bryant grew up. After Mike Brown was fired early last season, Bryant had said publicly that he wanted Phil Jackson. After D’Antoni was hired, he seemed on board with the decision. Now, reports have come out that say Bryant checked himself in and out of games, and that he wasn’t on board with his style of play. When Kobe was injured during the playoffs, he tweeted critical things about how they were playing, and D’Antoni called him “just a fan.” During Media Day, Kobe came out and said that he didn’t really think they should be playing Mike D’Antoni’s style.

Kobe left for Germany to get treatment on his knee, and according to the New York Daily News, he didn’t bother to tell his coach:

Still recovering from his torn Achilles last April, Bryant has yet to be cleared to run or jump by the Lakers. His return date to the team for game action is unknown. The team said he went to Germany for treatment unrelated to the Achilles injury. Interestingly, he didn’t tell Mike D’Antoni that he was leaving, choosing to notify the team’s long-time trainer, Gary Vitti, instead.

“Kobe not telling Mike D’Antoni tells you something about what Kobe thinks of coaches, and also Mike’s status,’’ said one NBA head coach. “Now if that were Phil Jackson, I would think Kobe would have told him he was going.’’

I would take this with a grain of salt. Kobe is injured and recovering, so he doesn’t even have to be around the team if he chooses not too. Kobe told their trainer Gary Vitti, so it’s not like he just ran away. Kobe and D’Antoni might not have the best relationship, none of us really know, but this shouldn’t mean anything. Yes, he would have told Phil Jackson, but Jackson is more than just a coach to Bryant, he’s a mentor and a friend. The Lakers might also have a rule that states he doesn’t have to tell the coach, so don’t read too much into this.

Tags: Kobe Bryant Los Angeles Lakers Mike D'Antoni

  • hookedonnews

    First of all, when Mike Brown was fired and Kobe was asked who he thought should be the coach he said D’Antoni not Phil Jackson. After Jackson’s name was floated he said some nice things about Jackson, but D’Antoni was his first choice. Secondly, Kobe has said he checked himself in and out of games when Phil Jackson was coaching. There is nothing wrong with the relationship between MDA and Kobe. Kobe just wants to do things his way. If he didn’t want to play D’Antoni’s system he shouldn’t have said he was the man for the job. Your quote about MDA calling Kobe a fan, is an incomplete quote and puts a twist on it that is a bit inaccurate. Of course, you aren’t the first person to do that, so I’m not surprised. I don’t know how close Kobe and PJ are, but I don’t really believe they are bosom buddies. Kobe has always wanted to do things his way no matter who the coach is. Hopefully he will not make waves when he returns because this team had enough drama last season. I don’t see Kobe having any problem playing in D’Antoni’s system. If Nash can do it, he certainly can.