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Sunday, January 21, 2018

Nick Young on Kobe Bryant-less win: He needs to pass us the ball

Kobe Bryant angry

The Los Angeles Lakers looked as good as they have all season during a 115-100 win over the Golden State Warriors Tuesday night, and they looked that way with Kobe Bryant sitting on the bench.

Bryant was given a day off to rest after he shot just 23 percent from the field over the previous two games. With Kobe missing so many shots instead of sharing the ball, many have wondered if he is hurting the team. Nick Young, who scored 15 points in 30 minutes on Tuesday, didn’t exactly shoot down that notion.

“Pass me the ball. Pass us the ball,” Young said when asked about Kobe after the win, per ESPN’s Baxter Holmes. “Tell him take a backseat for a lil bit. He can be Driving Ms. Daisy.”

The Warriors are the best team in basketball and entered Tuesday’s game with a 23-3 record, so you can understand why Swaggy P was riding high. He said his teammates felt more relaxed without Kobe, too.

“Some guys just played like ‘Django Unchained,'” Young said, according to Beto Duran. “They were free tonight.”

The ball was certainly spread around more without Bryant. Seven players scored double-digit points, which has been unheard of for LA this year. Considering Kobe has averaged more than 22 shot attempts per game this season (and made roughly 37 percent of them), that is not really a surprise.

On Monday, Zach Lowe posted a chart on Twitter that shows that the Lakers have been much better this season when Kobe is on the bench. While he is simply trying to make his teammates better by yelling nasty things at them during practice, it’s possible Kobe is putting too much pressure on them and trying to do too much himself. He’d be wise to adjust his game a bit for the sake of the team.

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