Kobe Bryant sprained his ankle at the end of the Lakers/Hawks game last night. With the Lakers trailing by two, Bryant took a jumper over Dahntay Jones with just a few seconds left in the game, missed, and came down on Jones' foot. And, after the game ended, the Black Mamba was visibly upset with Jones for sliding underneath of him on the jump shot and causing the injury to happen.
"As defensive players, you can contest shots," he said, "but you can't walk underneath players. That's dangerous for the shooter."
A reporter then asked Kobe if he thought Jones slid underneath of him on purpose in an effort to injure him.
"I don't ever want to put that on somebody," he said, "I really don't. I just think players need to be made conscious of it and I think officials need to protect shooters. Period."
He also took to his Twitter account a short time later and reiterated his point:
#dangerousplay that should have been called. Period.— Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) March 14, 2013
Jones didn't stay silent on the issue. He took to his Twitter account as well and let off a stream of tweets about the incident:
Tape doesn't lie. Ankle was turned on the floor after the leg kick out that knocked him off balance. I would never try to hurt the man— Dahntay (@dahntay1) March 14, 2013
Leg kick that makes contact with a defensive player is an offense foul. Period. The nba changed that rule 2 yrs ago. Stop it!— Dahntay (@dahntay1) March 14, 2013
So, who's right here? Does Kobe have a point about Jones sliding underneath of him and putting him in danger—or was Jones just playing good, solid D? Either way, it's clear Kobe isn't going to forget about what Jones did to him when the Hawks and Lakers play again next season.
"I can't get my mind past the fact that I got to wait a year to get my revenge," he said.
[via ESPN Los Angeles]