Jackass: His Growing Pains as a Rookie
Kobe came into the league cockier than he is now. Shaquille O'Neal felt like Bryant was too into himself and gave him the nickname "Showboat." He also hazed Bryant numerous times during that season. In Shaq Uncut: My Story, The Diesel portrayed Bryant as a loner and rarely went to dinner with the team. To be fair, a lot had to do with Kobe being underage and immature. He came into the league with a bunch of hype, but only played 15 MPG during his rookie season, averaging 7.6 points on 41 percent shooting. He also failed miserably in the playoffs that year. During Game 5 of the 2007 Western Semis, Bryant tried to lead his team back against the Jazz, but things didn't come as easy to him as they do now. He shot four airballs when he had a chance to shine and the Lakers lost the series in five games.