Kobe Bryant was Carmelo Anthony way before Carmelo Anthony was. Not really, because that is a very specific name that has probably never been used before, but in the “I want a trade, get me out of here” kind of way. If you’ll remember, way back in 2007, Bryant made a request, followed by a parking lot tirade, followed by being a Pouty McPoutersons about everything. Pretty similar to what’s going on with Carmelo Anthony, minus a parking lot diss song about Andrew Bynum.
Except, according to Kobe, he had it way worse. Because, you see, Carmelo doesn’t have to play with some jerk named Smush Parker. From FanHouse:
“I kind of had the upper hand because I had a no-trade clause,” Bryant said. “My situation was a little different.” [...]
“I know for me it was all about winning,” Bryant said. “In my situation, we weren’t spending the money to get players (to the Lakers). They had me playing around with Smush Parker (an undrafted journeyman who started in the backcourt alongside Bryant from 2005-07). So until they decided they wanted to make the necessary sacrifice financially that was competitive, then I didn’t want to be (with the Lakers).”
To be fair, Smush Parker is pretty garbage and Carmelo’s got a decent a team around him. Sure, they probably won’t win a title any time soon, but they’re better than a team full of Smush Parkers. (If you’re thinking anything is better for a team full of Smush Parkers, then you are right.)
This all comes from a big piece where Kobe explains that “free agency is not free agency” because if a player wants to leave a team then they’ll be penalized by the amount and structure of the contract. But it’s really just a way of Kobe saying that just because he requested a trade, he only did it because he wanted more championships and not because he was one of these pampered superstars of today. Yeah, that might be an ill subliminal slight towards Carmelo, but it’s definitely a rip on Smush Parker, which is hilarious considering he’s been out of the league since 2008. Cool timing, Kobe.
Nonetheless, let’s just hope that Smush Parker doesn’t have a Google Alert set up for himself. Because if he does, he’s going to be pretty upset when this pops up in his inbox.