Whatever bad blood that existed between Los Angeles Lakers icon Kobe Bryant and center Dwight Howard appears to have vanished.
In an interview with Arash Markazi of the Los Angeles Times, Bryant praised Howard and raved about the impact he’s brought to the Lakers.
“I’m happy for him because sometimes we don’t realize how much we love the game and miss the game until that window starts closing or its closed,” Bryant said. “Then you’re like, ‘Oh damn, I really miss playing the game. I want another opportunity to show what I can do.’ Sometimes you don’t know if that opportunity will ever come again. For him, I really believe he’s appreciative of the opportunity and I think he’s going to make a hell of an impact because of the new appreciation he has for playing the game.”
Bryant, 41, and the big man clashed in their singular campaign together during the 2012-13 NBA season. While the star duo was supposed to reach contention, Bryant went down with a season-ending injury before the team got swept by the San Antonio Spurs in the first round of the 2013 postseason.
After the disappointing meltdown, Howard departed the Lakers for the Houston Rockets in hopes of a fresh start. However, the former Defensive Player of the Year never found his sweet spot following three unfruitful seasons with the Rockets.
With the 6-foot-10 center seeking revival in his second stint with Los Angeles, it’s extremely encouraging to see the Lakers legend endorse Howard. The eight-time All-Star has career averages of 17.3 points, 12.6 rebounds and 2.0 blocks per game.