(Credit: AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
For the desperate Los Angeles Lakers, every game is key from here on out as they continue their pursuit of a playoff berth. However, Tuesday’s matchup vs. the Oklahoma City Thunder carries additional pressure as the Lakers will try to prove that they can hang tough with the League’s best in their first game at .500 in what seems like an eternity.
While the Thunder do not have a reputation as a dirty-playing team, Serge Ibaka’s chop to Blake Griffin’s groin garnered some attention and prompted reporters to ask Kobe Bryant how he would respond. According to SLAM Online, Kobe had some choice words for Ibaka and the LA Daily News:
Kobe claims that he would’ve retaliated immediately and dealt with the searing pain later, which sounds impossible. Per the LA Daily News: “I probably would have smacked him in the mouth,’ Bryant said after practice Monday at the Lakers’ facility in El Segundo.
Kobe has never been afraid to give his honest opinion to the media, and he certainly wasn’t today. It’s just a shame that Kobe and Ibaka won’t be defending each other. But, with Kobe’s recent display of youthful explosiveness, I wouldn’t rule out the prospect of an aerial face-off between these two during tomorrow night’s contest.