It may be the offseason right now, but Kobe Bryant is still taking shots.
Following his home run at Richard Sherman’s celebrity softball game last night, a fan of the Black Mamba sent out a tweet that caught the five-time NBA champion’s eye.
“Kobe about to make the top 10 on SportsCenter and he’s not even playing basketball,” the fan wrote, to which Bryant replied, “I’m shocked if ESPN puts me in the top ten of anything! Haha #jokesjokes.”
Yep, the Black Mamba got jokes, alright!
While you could take this in a number of directions – one of which being ESPN’s apparent affinity with LeBron James – the most relevant one is probably last year’s ESPN NBA rank.
According to ESPN’s writers, Bryant was the 25th best player in the league heading into last season, and this grading sparked a few interesting comments and online actions from Bryant over the weeks that followed.
ESPN also predicted that the Lakers would finish 12th in the Western Conference last season – and, hey, they were wrong: The Lakers actually finished 14th!
However, after appearing in just six games last season before going down with a knee injury, there’s a strong chance Bryant’s position will drop even further this season when ESPN release their 2014 rankings, so the Black Mamba probably won’t be cracking their top 10 any time soon.
Still, knowing Kobe, he’ll just use the rank as motivation to go out there and prove everybody wrong. Again.