Byron Scott: Kobe Bryant, 37, Metta World Peace, 35, are Lakers’ best defenders
There was a time in NBA history when Kobe Bryant, 37, and Metta World Peace, 35, were two of the NBA’s most feared defenders. Those days are long gone, but it sounds like no one told Los Angeles Lakers head coach Byron Scott.
When Scott addressed the media ahead of the Lakers’ Tuesday showdown with the Miami Heat, he offered his take on his team’s shortcomings. Namely, according to Scott, the Lakers’ problem is that their two oldest players — Bryant and World Peace — "guard guys the best":
Byron Scott: "Our problem is our two oldest guys guard guys the best." Talking about MWP & KobeArticle continues below ...
— Ethan J. Skolnick (@EthanJSkolnick) November 10, 2015
There’s a lot to unravel here. In a generous reading, Scott’s probably saying that Bryant and World Peace have the best mental understanding of what it takes to play defense in the NBA. And that’s fine. World Peace, in particular, still prides himself on his defense. But Bryant’s been a liability on defense for years now, thanks to his advanced age and the ravages of the injuries he’s suffered.
It might be a motivational ploy from Scott, who has demonstrated a willingness to call out his players through the media before. But it seems like an odd assessment of the Lakers roster.