“I was scared I ain’t gonna lie,” Teague said when discussing the idea of playing with Bryant. “I ain’t wanna play with Kobe. … What did he say about J Lin? We was in a game, he was like, ‘You left me with this s—?’ I was like, ‘What?’ He was like, ‘You left me with this s—?’ He was pointing at Jeremy Lin. I was like, ‘Oh s— like what?’ He was like, ‘You supposed to come out here and you left me with this s—.’ He was like, ‘Man that s— crazy.'”
Teague played for five teams — the Hawks, Minnesota Timberwolves, Indiana Pacers, Boston Celtics and Milwaukee Bucks — during his time in the pros and began his NBA career in the 2009-10 season. The Hawks drafted him with the No. 19 overall pick in the 2009 NBA Draft.
The point guard spent the lion’s share of his time playing in the NBA with the Hawks franchise, seeing as how he played eight seasons in Atlanta. He also enjoyed the most productive seasons of his career with the Hawks.
His only All-Star appearance of his career came during the 2014-15 season when he was a Hawk. He averaged 15.9 points, 7.0 assists and 1.7 steals per game during the regular season for a Hawks team that finished with a 60-22 record.
The 2014-15 iteration of the Hawks boasted a roster that included Al Horford, Kyle Korver and Paul Millsap along with Teague. The team advanced all the way to the Eastern Conference Finals after beating the Brooklyn Nets and Washington Wizards in the first two rounds of the playoffs.
But Atlanta’s season came to an end against LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Cavaliers swept the Hawks in four games before losing to Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors in the 2015 NBA Finals.
Teague last played in the NBA for the Bucks during the 2020-21 season and went on to win an NBA title with the team. Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Bucks defeated the Phoenix Suns in six games in the 2021 NBA Finals.
Fans can’t blame Teague for being scared of playing with someone as competitive as Bryant was. It’s fun to imagine how Teague would have fared on the Lakers alongside the shooting guard, however.