Gary Payton and Chris Webber Explain Why Kobe Bryant is so Difficult to GuardPrior to NBA TV's broadcast of Charlotte's 117-110 double overtime win over the Lakers, Gary Payton and Chris Webber went on to the studio's demo court to explain why it is so difficult to guard Kobe Bryant.
1) Payton said that Bryant can drive to the hoop from anywhere and that when he gets into the paint he finishes with authority, often dunking over players.
2) Bryant complements his driving game with his ability to consistently make jump shots if his defender backs off of him to discourage him from driving; Payton noted that this is a very important factor that elevated Bryant's game and Webber added that he has only seen one other player--Michael Jordan--do a move that Bryant has mastered: consistently making the jumper off of a two dribble move. Webber said that Bryant can back a defender up with a hard dribble or two and then stop on a dime and rise up to shoot, a move that is very, very difficult to do and even more difficult to stop.
3) Payton said that Bryant is able to shoot the fadeaway jumper over either shoulder after backing down his defender in the post.
Webber concluded the segment by saying that Coach Phil Jackson helps out Bryant by placing the other four players in ideal positions relative to their skill sets, so that when Bryant gets the ball he has room to operate and passing options if he is trapped.
posted by David Friedman @ 2:28 PM