Former Phoenix Suns superstar said Kobe Bryant recruited him to come to Los Angeles Lakers

Jason Simpson
3 Min Read

Former NBA star Shawn Marion never suited up for the Los Angeles Lakers in his NBA career, but Kobe Bryant certainly did his part to try to change that.

Marion recently recalled a time that Bryant reached out to him to inquire about the possibility of the forward taking his talents to Los Angeles, a scenario that obviously never came to life.

“It was a trade,” he said, recalling that he was on the verge of being traded. “Kobe had called me, and it was something dealing with — if it was true, that’s probably a time with the rumors with that K.G. (Kevin Garnett) stuff — and it was like, ‘Are you really gon’ go out on this market, or it’s a possibility I want you to come to L.A.’ So we was texting and…it ain’t happen ’cause they ain’t have the money to pay me. … But that was a story that people don’t know about a lot.”

Marion played for five teams during his NBA career. He’s perhaps remembered best for his time with the Phoenix Suns.

The forward spent over eight seasons with the Suns and earned four All-Star nods in the process, establishing himself as one of the league’s top players. He averaged 18.4 points, 10.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.9 steals and 1.4 blocks per game with Phoenix.

Later in his career, he added to his resume by winning a ring with the Dallas Mavericks in 2011. Notably, he and the Mavs had to go through Bryant and the Lakers in order to win that title. Dallas swept Los Angeles in the second round of the playoffs that year.

Although Bryant never got to play alongside Marion in the NBA, the Lakers legend had no trouble putting together a wonderful career.

The Hall of Famer led the Lakers to five NBA titles during his time with the organization, and on a personal level, he earned 18 All-Star nods, two scoring titles, two Finals MVP awards and one league MVP award.

Marion’s story is another look into Bryant’s career. Since Bryant’s death in 2020, countless folks have helped keep his memory alive by sharing stories about him, and that trend likely isn’t going away anytime soon.

The 2014-15 season was Marion’s last in the NBA, and Bryant retired one season later after 20 years in the league.

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Jason is excited about the LeBron James era of Lakers basketball and hopes that the end result will be multiple championships.