The tension between Kobe and Shaq has been evident for years. The two won three championships as teammates on the Lakers, but their strong personalities constantly clashed, eventually forcing the franchise to choose between the stars. The Lakers chose the younger Bryant and traded the older O’Neal. It worked; while Shaq immediately won a title with the Heat and dissed Kobe in a rap song, Bryant got the last laugh by surpassing him in titles.
One of the big reasons why the superstars clashed, and why the Lakers chose to keep Bryant, is because of Shaq’s poor work ethic.
Kobe is currently on a promotional tour in Europe, and during an interview with an Italian radio station, he reportedly discussed the friction between himself and Shaq. According to Sportando.net, via I am a GM, Kobe dished on Shaq’s poor practice habits.
“I like players who workout. I use to do that 6/7 hours per day. I cannot stand players who practice for 30 minutes,” Bryant reportedly said of Shaq. “I need to say something to them.”
While we’ve gotten on Kobe’s case for practicing hard to show everyone how hard he practices, nobody questions his work ethic. If Shaq had Kobe’s drive and desire, he would have had an even better career. But Shaq was never motivated by being recognized as the greatest player ever. He was content being one of the best players of all-time, while also enjoying himself. That divergence is the heart of a lot of conflict between the men. Few will argue that Kobe has the wrong approach to practice.
Chest bump to I am a GMGoogle+