Posted by Neil Paine on June 28, 2009
"While coach Phil Jackson said losing to the Celtics by 39 points in Game 6 of the 2008 NBA Finals motivated Bryant to succeed, he acknowledged that Kobe could not overcome Walton's utter lack of talent alone.
'Kobe certainly put up big numbers, but he also rallied this young group of players and took their play to another level with him,' Jackson said. 'Winning in the Luke Walton era took a total team effort. They should be proud of what they accomplished. You have to be at the very pinnacle of your game to rise above a player of Walton's caliber.'"