Jeremy Lin shared a single season with Kobe Bryant in the Los Angeles Lakers, but the 2019 NBA champion has some memories from his time in L.A., being a teammate of an injured Bryant. Lin joined the latest episode of Danny Green’s podcast, “Inside the Green Room,” where he recalled a great story ahead of the 2015 trade deadline.
That year the Lakers didn’t deliver as Kobe expected, and he made it clear that he didn’t want anybody who wasn’t playing at an acceptable level.
Jeremy Lin brings up a memory of Kobe when he showed up a day prior to the NBA trade deadline and said
“I just came by to say bye to some of you bums who are going to get traded tomorrow.” 😂
— NBA Retweet (@RTNBA) May 15, 2020
“I remember at this time he had gotten hurt and he was out for the season, so he wasn’t around for quite some time, just rehabbing and being away from the team and stuff. And then all of a sudden after we hadn’t seen him in a few weeks… he walks in the gym, and this is the day before the trade deadline, and we’re all about to start practice. We’re stretching, doing our dynamic warm-up or whatever.
“And then he comes in, sweatshirt, he has a sling for his hurt shoulder, he has his shades on, his Kobe shades. And he walks in and everyone’s like ‘ohhhhhhhhhh’ and Booz, Carlos Boozer, is like ‘Kob! Good to see you bro! Dang, we haven’t seen you in a bit, how come you came today?’
“And he was just stone-faced, and he was like ‘I just came by to say bye to some of you bums who are going to get traded tomorrow.’ And then he sits down at the table where you control the scoreboard at the practice facility and he said a couple words to the coach, and then he left. And I remember one of my teammates was just like ‘I lost all motivation to practice.’”
That would have made a big impact on Kobe’s teammates and make everybody worry about their future. They were happy to see Kobe and he surprised everybody with his words.
However, the Purple and Gold didn’t make any trade that year. Kobe played only 35 games that season and the Lakers finished 21-61, the second-worst record in the team’s history.