There is a legitimate question about Kobe Bryant and the Princeton offense. But that question is not “will he grasp it?”
Laker.com and Lakers broadcast sideline reporter (plus friend of this blog) Mike Trudell tweeted this out Monday.
Kobe Bryant has already had a few meetings w/Brown & Jordan about the Princeton. Jordan said he’d literally already picked it up in advance.
The mentioned Jordan would be Lakers assistant coach and Princeton offense guru Eddie Jordan.
That all sounds very Kobe — he pushed for the offense because it reminded him of the triangle with a focus on spacing and no set plays (you make an action then the next action depends on the defensive reaction, it’s a read and react offense). You knew he was into the idea. And nobody sane is questioning Kobe’s basketball IQ or work ethic. He’ll get it.
None of that was the real question.
The question is will he run the sets — or let Steve Nash control the flow of the offense — in the final five minutes of the fourth quarter? The Lakers become predictable and defensible when he tries to go isolation in the final minutes of games. He hits some big shots, but he misses plenty too, and the bigger issue is everyone stands around and things become stagnant.
The Lakers have a lot of weapons, they will have mismatches to exploit late in games. The key is to use the Princeton offense — or any set of plays — to go at those and not just devolve into easy to defend sets. That’s the question before the Lakers.