Kobe Bryant Once Shut Down LeBron James Hopes With One Phone Call
October 11, 2021
Kobe Bryant and LeBron James had nothing but respect for one another. Well, the Black Mamba made one phone call and destroyed LeBron’s chances to build an even stronger team.
Matt Barnes made an appearance in an episode of “No Chill With Gilbert Arenas” and talked about several topics, including THE phone call. So, Pat Riley called him and wanted to get him on his team. The Miami Heat looked really good back then and Barnes was an excellent addition. It was a good offer and playing alongside the Big 3 was like a dream come true. It didn’t happen. Kobe was “responsible” for this. Barnes considered joining LeBron, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh. It was a good offer and going to Miami was great. Kobe made him change his mind.
Kobe Bryant stole Matt Barnes from LeBron James and the Miami Heat
The Lakers legend called Barnes and made an offer. It was more like an once-in-a-lifetime offer.
“I get this call from a number I don’t know… and ‘It’s Kob,” said Barnes. “I’m just like, ‘Yeah right, who’s this?’ And he’s like, ‘Nah, it’s Kob for real.’ I was like, ‘What? What’s up?’ So we kind of start talking, and he told me, ‘Anyone crazy enough to f*** with me is crazy enough to play with me. Do you want to be a Laker?’”
Kobe wanted Barnes on his roster in LA and that’s how he got him. Barnes was the best player available on the market and he became a Laker right away.
The Black Mamba wanted Barnes for a reason. In one of their games, Barnes pulled out a move that impressed Kobe and this helped him make a decision.
Going to LA was pretty big back then. However, some say Barnes would have had a better tenure with LeBron and the Heat. He wanted Kobe and the rest is history.
Kobe died last year after his helicopter crashed outside LA. He was traveling with his daughter Gigi and seven other people. No one survived the crash. The world of NBA will never accept the loss. Kobe was a legend and a true mentor for young stars.
Radmila graduated with a degree in Translation & Interpreting. She is an NBA and NFL writer for The Ball Zone, and has been covering popular sports topics for several years. A loyal Lakers fan, she puts energy into reporting big roster moves, potential trades, on-court-accomplishments, and off-court rumors.