The death of Kobe Bryant has obviously affected many people, but especially LeBron James. The two superstars have often been linked through their greatness and represent great figures of the NBA. But if the respect has always been there, it’s not for all that Kobe was stopping himself from trashtalking the King.
In the summer of 2010, when LeBron decided to take his talents to South Beach, the Black Mamba – defending champion with the Lakers – did not hesitate to send him a very stinging message.
With a brutal seven-game victory over the Celtics in the bank for Bryant, the 2010 offseason is dominated by LeBron James’ decision to leave Cleveland for Miami.
What matters to Bryant is Phil Jackson agreeing to return to coach the Lakers again in pursuit of a third consecutive NBA title. Bryant sends James a text message. It goes like this:
“Go ahead and get another MVP, if you want. And find the city you want to live in. But we’re going to win the championship. Don’t worry about it.”
Derrick Rose beat out James in MVP voting that year, but LeBron led the Miami to the Finals in his first season with the Heat. The Lakers did keep Jackson around and went 57-25 in the regular season, but were swept by the Mavericks in the conference semifinals.