Throughout his legendary 20-year career in the NBA, the Los Angeles Lakers' Kobe Bryant has dominated the game of basketball. With his innate ability to score when it matters and lead his team to victory in the face of adversity, Bryant will go down as one of the greatest individual players of all-time.
However, the “Black Mamba” did not become a five-time NBA champion on his own as several elite teammates assisted him in that venture. From Shaquille O'Neal and Derek Fisher in the Lakers' three-peat from 1999-2002 to Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom at the turn of the decade, Bryant's supporting cast has played a huge role in his success.
But for every player that helped Bryant achieve legendary status, there were teammates that just couldn't play alongside the surefire future Hall of Famer. Whether it was their below average skill level or a lack of chemistry, certain players were out of their element as Bryant's teammate.
With the Lakers being one of the main powerhouses of the Western Conference during the first half of Bryant's career, the team's weaknesses were not as apparent. But after Shaquille O'Neal's controversial departure from Los Angeles prior to the 2004-05 season, Bryant endured some difficult seasons with the Lakers. The team's lack of spending led to several forgettable players suiting up for the team as Bryant's efforts went to waste.
Even through his return to championship glory, Bryant played with some teammates whose contributions – or lack thereof – have become comical in retrospect. There have also been some superstar players that simply couldn't hack it alongside Bryant.
With that in mind, let's take a look at the Top 15 worst teammates of Kobe Bryant's legendary career.
15 Sun Yue
14 Dennis Rodman
13 Brian Grant
12 Adam Morrison
11 Ronny Turiaf
10 Josh Powell
9 Vlade Divac
8 D.J. Mbenga
7 Javaris Crittenton
6 Steve Nash
5 Slava Medvedenko
4 Chris Mihm
3 Smush Parker
2 Kwame Brown
1 Dwight Howard
The story of Howard's time with the Lakers is eerily similar to what happened when the Lakers originally acquired Shaquille O'Neal, but ended much worse and much quicker. Acquired in a four-team, 11-player trade from the Orlando Magic, Lakers fans, executives, and Kobe Bryant himself all hoped that Howard's arrival signaled a new era in Laker basketball. But the talented center struggled to adjust to life in Los Angeles and being Bryant's teammate. The Lakers struggled all season and barely made the playoffs, losing in the first round. Howard signed a lucrative contract with the Houston Rockets in free agency and it was rumored that his relationship with Bryant was the reason why. The issues between Howard and Bryant have been well publicized with both men taking shots at each other on numerous occasions. Howard's time with the Laker is best described by slightly altering a lyric from Taylor Swift's song 'Blank Space.'
“Cause darling you were a Dwightmare wrapped in a daydream.”
Leave A Comment
Looking for an AD FREE EXPERIENCE on TheSportster?Get Your Free Access Now!