Kobe Bryant News: Mamba Doesn't Do Great With Rookies
Unless the Lakers make a trade leading up to the draft, they will have three new rookies on the roster next season. Jordan Clarkson will be a sophomore and Julius Randle will essentially be playing his rookie campaign in his second year out of Kentucky.
Not quite the veteran team Kobe Bryant is used to playing with, but hopefully they will be better than last season. The Lakers will have a chance to add some quality veterans as soon as free agency begins, so not everyone will be a rookie, which is a good thing for Bryant. According to Mark Medina of the LA Daily News, Mitch Kupchak said that Bryant does not get along with rookies:
"He's never been great with rookies," Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak said of Bryant. "Rookies have come to expect Kobe's glare, Kobe ignoring him in the locker room and saying things."
This is not really surprising. Bryant is used to having a veteran supporting cast while chasing an NBA title, so there was no need to deal with rookies. The Lakers have not traditionally hit on their later draft picks, so the rookies just sit on the bench, but times have changed.
The Lakers are currently rebuilding, so these rookies will hopefully take over Bryant when he retires from the game. Bryant needs to do his best to guide these rookies and teach them how to win. If this is indeed Bryant's last year, these rookies need to soak up all the knowledge they can from the five time NBA champ.
Hopefully Mitch Kupchak is able to bring in some good free agents to make this team competitive again. Bryant will likely be playing in the final season of his career, it would be nice for him to go out with a team that can at least be in the playoff hunt.
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