December 14, 2010
At his best, President Barack Obama succeeds because he's calm, collected, and able to weather any storm that comes his way. On the basketball court, Kobe Bryant(notes) operates in much the same way: There's nothing he hasn't seen, so you just can't faze him.
[Photos: President and Basketballer Barak Obama]
Monday, the two had the chance to meet while at a Boys & Girls Club in Washington for a charitable twist on the usual champions-meet-president event. But instead of finding some common ground, they decided to talk trash to each other. From Dave McMenamin at ESPNChicago.com:
"Derrick Rose may have your number," President Obama lightheartedly jabbed at Kobe Bryant as the team posed for a photograph after presenting the president with an autographed replica 2009-10 championship banner, like the one that hangs at Staples Center.
Without skipping a beat, Bryant made a similar transition from gracious guest at the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Washington, where the Lakers participated in a series of community service projects, to a proud player protecting his spot at the top of the pecking order.
"I said, 'If he calls that number, I'll be sure to pick up after the fifth ring,'" Bryant quipped back -- referring, naturally, to the five championship rings he has.
Oh no he didn't! I suppose Obama was referring to the Bulls' win over the Lakers at the United Center on Friday, or perhaps the fact that Rose is on the way up while Kobe is nearing the downside of his career. Still, someone should probably tell the most powerful man in the world that Kobe holds grudges. After the Republicans' victories in the midterm elections, Obama can't afford to give up any votes for 2012.
On the other hand, Kobe should probably realize that Rose hasn't even been in the league for five seasons, so it's not as if he can match that kind of hardware. Nor can anyone else in the league, for that matter, unless you count Kobe's coach.
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