67RIEFNS No. 50: Kobe Bryant out for revenge

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The NBA is full of talent, personality and suspense. During the offseason, It’s easy to forget how wonderful the league can be. So, I’ve assembled 67 Reasons I’m Excited For Next Season (67RIEFNS). They’ll be presented in no particular order.

Kobe Bryant’s take-no-prisoners attitude has made him one of the NBA’s best and most-entertaining players of all time.

I can’t wait to see what the chip on his shoulder does for him this season.

Kobe – in his mind – has been slighted. I hope he feel that way, at least.

ESPN ranked Kobe the NBA’s 40th-best player and accused him of undermining the Lakers’ ability to attract other stars, and the Lakers failed to build the championship contender Kobe wanted.

Who’s the Lakers’ second-best player? Carlos Boozer? Jeremy Lin? Nick Young? Julius Randle?

The last time he had such a poor supporting cast, the Smush Parker/Kwame Brown days, Kobe set a record for usage and averaged 35.4 points per game. I’d love to see that Kobe – the one hell-bent on spiting everyone, even his own front office.

He’ll have the chance, filling a major role both by playing time and scoring opportunities.

Last year, Kobe didn’t have those opportunities. He missed nearly the entire season due to injury – watching a coach he clearly didn’t respect lead players he didn’t have much use for (or take take very seriously). That pent-up frustration could add even more fuel for Kobe this offseason.

Kobe shrugged off the ESPN article critical of his ability/willingness to work well with others, and he said he was pleased with the Lakers’ offseason effort. I hope that was just lip service.

I want more of the Kobe who called ESPN voters who placed him 40th “idiots.” I want the Kobe who relies on the only person he trusts when his back is against the wall, himself.

If Kobe tries to do too much – and factors internal and external are putting him on that course – we’ll get some spectacularly good and spectacularly bad moments from him. To me, it’s all spectacular.