Kobe Bryant has freedom his boss doesn’t. Mike Brown has been on a testy year-long audition for why Laker fans should trust him — Kobe, he has five Larry O’Brien Trophies to attest to why we must take him seriously. So we weren’t surprised when Kobe called the BS about the “panic” around the Lakers’ 0-2 start. “I’ve won, so I can,” Bryant said to reporters on Thursday. “Mike, it would be a little tougher for him to say that. So I’ll say it for him: Everybody shut up. Let us work.” Kobe didn’t stop there, calling the concern “idiotic” and “stupid.” This isn’t Kobe calling out his city like Ron Burgundy, but he’s giving it to everyone just as straight by doing the correct thing and saying, everybody — chill. It’s our nature as basketball fans to dissect everything about the Lakers, and those flaws in L.A.’s game are very real, but these are things fixed by time. Remember the Heat in 2010? … “The Association” is always appointment viewing for basketball fans, but the audience isn’t much bigger than that. The second episode, scheduled to air Friday on NBA TV, should be appointment viewing for anyone wanting a great, new spin on Hurricane Sandy’s aftermath. NetsDaily had the story today that the second episode has been edited by the league to focus on the storm’s effect on Brooklyn and Tyshawn Taylor, who was stuck in his Hoboken apartment for two days. The third episode is likely to include the drama surrounding the postponed season opener against the Knicks at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center. It was supposed to be the jewel of tonight’s schedule. … Whether you take this as a promise or a threat, Michael Jordan is saying he’s in it as owner in Charlotte for “the long haul,” via the Charlotte Observer. Another point we barely touched on in that post was how the Bobcats, named after former owner Bob Johnson (what, a vanity license plate with his name on it wasn’t cool enough?) are interested in reclaiming “Hornets” as their nickname. Should New Orleans go for a new identity under new ownership, it could still mean the Hornets name would live in an unbroken streak since 1988 despite being used in four different cities. … We’re out like Westbrook’s defense.
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