You might recall a confusing anecdote that made the rounds earlier this year where Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka claimed Kobe Bryant had a dinner with Heath Ledger to talk about his performance in The Dark Knight and channeled that energy into dropping over 60 points at Madison Square Garden . This immediately sent up red flags of even the most lax movie watchers, as its well known that Ledger died before The Dark Knight was released.
Pelinka was criticized for fabricating a story, but now Kobe is saying he just got the details confused.
Bryant said in a new interview with the podcast Knuckleheads that, prior to the game, he fell down a wormhole researching the way that Ledger committed himself to the role of the Joker. He was inspired by the level of commitment and took it with him into the game.
"I had to find that space. I didn't go out to dinner in New York. I stayed in my room. This is actually the story Rob told, that he got confused about, the Heath Ledger stuff. Because I stayed up watching Batman, and watching Heath Ledger. And then I went and started researching about Heath Ledger, and how he got into character and how he just became all-consuming," he said.
Bryant admitted that he never met Ledger, but said that his drive helped him get to a place where he could pull of that impressive game.
"That inspired me to go into my Garden mode. When I go in there I don't want to say hi to the gen—I don't want say hi to these people—I don't wanna talk to nobody," he said. "Everybody leave me alone."
Take a look at the interview up top.