After 16 years in the league, Kobe Bryant has decided to keep a diary to document “the year he caught Jordan”. While Kobe refuses to remove the diary from a pedestal in his trophy room, he has allowed Writing Bareback the exclusive rights to post these excerpts.
November 4th – vs Detroit
It’s normally a great feeling to get your first win of the season. But when it comes against a team that would have trouble getting a .500 record in the D-league, it’s more of a relief than a triumph. I can’t even take pleasure in the vengeance against Tayshaun Prince for being a part of the ’04 Finals team that cost me my MJ-tying ring. It feels like beating up a frail old man. He’s just so empty, like the automotive recession killed both Detroit’s soul and Tayshaun’s soul. But we got the win, and that’s the most important thing. It’s far more important than the well-being of anyone in Detroit. That’s just the truth. But it’s also true that your heart goes out to all the guys on the Piston’s team. They have to go back to a cold city with zero palm trees after getting waked (that’s a term I learned from kindred Champion Michael Phelps, when you’re beating someone so badly that they’re literally swimming in your wake). When you beat a team that’s not Boston, Miami, Dallas, the Clippers, Phoenix, San Antonio or New York, you try not to rub it in too much. Before the game I told the guys, “Let’s just go out there and beat this sad little team without making a big thing of it.” Then sometime around the end of the 1st quarter, I hear Ron yelling “Winter is coming! Winter is coming!” as he rotates to help on Greg Munroe. Most people just thought it was Ron being weird, but it’s clever trash talk considering it is factually and metaphorically true while being culturally relevant. Walking over to the bench, I tell Ron that his Game of Thrones reference was pretty good. He laughed loudly. Then stopped. Then stared blankly at me, “What are you talking about?” Never mind, Ron.
After the game, I overhear Dwight talking to DJO, “That would suck to live in Detroit in November. I’d be like, Brrrrr, I’m cold! Doesn’t this Ford Model-T have any heat?” Everyone laughed. When it died down, DJO let out a sigh, “I’ll bet that Midwestern cost of living is nice though.” Four games, 0 minutes and a terrible profile picture, I don’t think DJO is going to make it. Too bad.