Kobe Bryant may be retired, but “Mamba Mentality” isn’t.
The former Los Angeles Lakers great known for his ruthless competitiveness that showed up in forms like belittling teammate Smush Parker and taunting opponents is now coaching his daughter’s youth basketball team.
That team comprised of girls around 13 years old recently posted a fourth-place finish that Bryant noted on his Instagram page.
Fourth place ‘winners’
To the surprise of nobody, there appears to have been no joy in the occasion.
Aside from the look of absolute melancholy on each of the young girls’ faces, the post features Bryant mocking the team’s finish as “fourth place ‘winners’” and goes the extra mile to shame a player for daring to prioritize something ahead of playing basketball for Kobe Bryant.
‘That should tell you where her focus was’
“The 7th player [not in the pic] missed this game for a dance recital so that should tell you where her focus was at the time,” Bryant wrote.
Ouch. There will be no exploring passions as a young adult on Kobe’s watch. Unless, of course, that passion happens to be basketball.
Apparently even Kobe thought his original assessment of said dancer was a little harsh. The above image is a screenshot of the original post.
He has since published a version that’s been slightly amended.
The reworked section of the post reads as follows:
“The 7th player (not in pic) missed this game for a dance recital so that should tell you where her focus was at the time, meaning she enjoyed dance more than ball which is fine.”
‘It’s all love’
He also attempted to explain the messaging in a Twitter post.
Nah fam I was just explaining why she wasn’t in the pic. Most of my kids on the team played and still play other sports including my daughter so it’s all love. Don’t misunderstand the message.— Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) September 11, 2019
And posted a happier photo of his team.
For the record, even thou they HATED fourth place. I did ask them to at least smile for one pic 😃 pic.twitter.com/QgNdaE1P93— Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) September 11, 2019
Celebrate the positive
Lest Bryant be portrayed as a taskmaster focused only on negative reinforcement, a post from earlier in the week demonstrates otherwise.
His girls posted a 115-27 victory in another game.
Bryant was all about that.
More from Yahoo Sports: