Responding to comments from Los Angeles Lakers superstar guard Kobe Bryant, Thursday former Laker Smush Parker called Bryant a terrible teammate.
Parker said he stopped passing Bryant the ball during the 2005-06 season, and didn’t like how the future Hall of Famer treated people, he said to TMZ.
“What I don’t like about him is the man that he is. His personality. How he treats people. I don’t like that side of Kobe Bryant,” Parker said. “The reason I wasn’t a Laker after my second year is because I didn’t bow down to [Kobe]. I didn’t kiss his a–. I wasn’t kissing his feet. Quite frankly, towards the end of the second season, I stopped passing him the ball. I stopped giving him the ball. I started looking him off.”
Telling reporters about a conversation he had with new Los Angeles point guard Steve Nash, Bryant said Parker and center Kwame Brown cost him the league MVP in the 2005-06 season, when he averaged a league-high 35.4 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 4.5 assists per game, including an 81-point explosion against the Toronto Raptors. Nash would win his second consecutive MVP trophy that year.
“I tell Steve, you won MVP but I was playing with Smush Parker,” Bryant said “He’s playing with [Leandro] Barbosa. I’m playing with Smush and Kwame [Brown]. My goodness.”
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“Smush Parker was the worst,” Bryant added. “He shouldn’t have been in the NBA, but we were too cheap to pay for a point guard. We let him walk on.”
Parker signed with the Miami Heat for the 2007-08 season, but was later waived that March and the 31-year-old was picked up by the the Los Angeles Clippers for the remainder of the season. He has not played for an NBA club since, but earlier this year had stints with Iranian and Dominican Republic leagues.