Tuesday was a tough night for Kobe Bryant. The Black Mamba hurt his right elbow to the point where he often used his left hand for nearly the entirety of a possession. (He still finished with a team-high 30, though, because he's Kobe Bryant, so of course he did.) His Los Angeles Lakers forced just two turnovers in a 122-105 loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder that dropped L.A. back under .500 after they'd gotten to even-par for the first time since December. He was repeatedly cooked by Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook, who led the way with 37 points, 10 rebounds and five assists in the win.
And adding insult to injury — literally, in this case — after he and his team went scoreless for the final six minutes of the loss, one fan in the stands at Chesapeake Energy Arena made sure ol' Beansie didn't even get to go back to the locker room with his full complement of fluffy terrycloth, as captured by our friends at the Yahoo! Sports Minute:
It's most likely that this fan just wanted to head home with a memento of a night spent watching an all-time great play, to become the owner of a one-degree-of-separation item that makes tangible the moment you were within arm's reach of Kobe Bryant. But it's also possible that the fan just wanted to take away one more weapon from Bryant's arsenal. After all, he's got a pretty long and storied history of towel-based warfare. Just ask Lamar Odom:
Hey, wake up, Lamar.
You could also ask Luke Walton:
... or this sideline reporter:
... or, perhaps most famously, this poor unassuming lady:
Maybe this fan, anticipating the Mamba spitting postgame venom, just wanted to do a public service.
It's possible, but I'm going to bet on "I just want something that had Kobe Bryant's sweat on it," and considering he sucks it all out of his jerseys and he doesn't wear a headband like LeBron James, this was the best available option. I bet you can really smell the desire to quote "Wedding Crashers."
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