This news is a day old, but it’s still something that is on my mind. Kobe Bryant was fined $100,000 by the NBA for overreacting and calling referee Bennie Adams a “f-cking f-aggot”.
Bryant is an amazingly intense competitor (which I admire) and it was clear that the heat of the moment was the reason for his outburst. But it once again showed me that maybe he isn’t a very nice person. He said that with the intent to insult.
The image I had of Bryant is that he’s so intense that sometimes it hurts his teammates. For a guy with a sexual assault incident in his record and a crybaby trade demand, this guy wants to be in charge. And when he made that gay slur, it showed a side of him I wasn’t surprised existed.
One of the best ways to get a glimpse of a person’s true identity is to see how they react under the toughest of pressure. When they’re pushed to the limit, how they handle themselves is a good way to see their real character.
Bryant showed that he likes to freely insult people. He showed that he likes to call people the term “f-ggot” since it’s in his vocabulary and he freely uses it. Whenever I get frustrated, swear words come out of my mouth, but I never would call someone such a term. And not in a public setting.
It reminds me of LeBron James when he saw his former team in suffering and pain. That karma tweet did not go well and the “evil” identity that James built this summer came out. No sympathy for his city, his former teammates. None whatsoever. His mind was simply on revenge.
Alex Rodriguez has had his moments of bad judgment on the field too. With his arrogance over the Dallas Braden last year, his image took a huge turn. We all remember when he yelled at a Blue Jays infielder to distract him from catching a pop up or his karate chop in the 2004 playoffs.
To me, his instinct is to cheat. Resorting to cheating during times of pressure revealed to me that this guy has cheating in his DNA. So when he revealed he did steroids, I was not surprised during the announcement. After all, he already showed us that he is a cheater by his other acts.
So to get back to Bryant, this was a bad move on his part. But what probably hurts him more is that we just learned that he calls people a gay slur when he’s angry. When he’s frustrated, he can’t keep his emotions in check and starts name-calling.
Want to see who the real Kobe Bryant is outside of being a basketball player on the court? We just got a small glimpse of it.
*** This piece isn’t here to throw people who make bad judgments under the bus. But it’s really disheartening to see athletes do bad things when they’re under pressure.