One of the many things fans were looking out for was how he and Lakers big man Dwight Howard would interact. The two have a rocky past due to their lone season together on the Lakers. Since Howard’s return to L.A., however, he and Bryant have been quite supportive of one another.
That trend nearly took an accidental turn for the worse on Sunday night. As Howard explained, when Bryant came up to him before the game and offered him a congratulatory slap on the neck, Howard nearly swung back in defense of himself.
Dwight Howard said he didn’t know it was Kobe Bryant who tapped him on the shoulder and he initially was going to elbow him. But he’s glad he didn’t 😂 pic.twitter.com/Wep1QztZxl
— Mark Medina (@MarkG_Medina) November 18, 2019
“I didn’t even know who it was,” Howard said. “He slapped me on the neck and I was about to elbow him. Then he said, ‘What’s up, man. You’re playing good.’ It was cool, man. I am glad he came to the game. It was a lot of fun having him in the building. The crowd was going ham. It was great to have him.”
It would have been a pretty disturbing sight for fans to see considering how far the two have come in terms of making amends. Luckily, Howard thought twice about blindly swinging his elbow at one of the storied franchise’s most beloved players.
Howard has managed to become a major contributor for the Lakers this season. In Sunday’s win, the eight-time All-Star had two points, nine rebounds and three blocks.