Byron Scott would like Kobe Bryant to look more for his own shot
The debate continues, should the aging Kobe Bryant, now a 36-year old veteran, try to dominate the game with his individual talents or play a team-oriented game?
On Tuesday night, in a 111-103 Lakers’ win over the Denver Nuggets, he did the latter, collecting his second triple-double of the season with 23 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists.
On Wednesday, Coach Byron Scott said he’d actually like Bryant to shoot the ball more than the 11 he attempted against the Nuggets.
“I’d like him to be a little bit more aggressive, and take a little bit more shots,” said Scott after practice.
Bryant sat out Wednesday, but may participate when the team gets back together on New Year’s Day. The Lakers (10-22) host the Memphis Grizzlies (23-8) on Friday night at Staples Center.
“It’s all dictated by the way the defense is playing,” said Scott. “Against Denver, at times they were coming, double-teaming him. Our spacing was great. He made some great passes out to our guys and they made shots.”
The Lakers coach downplayed the notion that Bryant has changed his game a bit.
“I don’t think it’s a new Kobe at all. It’s an old Kobe doing the same old things he’s been doing,” said Scott.
What has changed is Bryant’s time on the court. Scott is hoping to keep Bryant at roughly 32 minutes a night. The All-Star is also sitting out practices and skipped three games recently to rest.
Bryant is averaging 21.6 field-goal attempts a game, easily the highest on the team. Scott doesn’t have a specific number in mind.
“He’s just taking what the defenses are giving him. That’s what great players do,” said Scott. “The last two games, his shot selection has been great, but he hasn’t gotten the number of shots we’d like him to get on normal basis -- but everything else has been up so you can’t argue with that.”
The Lakers are currently in 14th place in the Western Conference, 7 1/2 games behind the eighth-place Phoenix Suns (18-15).
All things Lakers, all the time.
Get all the Lakers news you need in Dan Woike's weekly newsletter.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.