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By / 06.22.09

We roll out of the weekend with a leadoff post that might irritate some of you, and that’s fine, because it irritated me. Kobe Bryant, the guy that just won a title and a Finals MVP with the NBA’s Lakers, was seen at the Angels game last night, a game that was televised on ESPN. And yeah, it might be a silly thing to get worked up over, especially with all these other sports going on like…uh…

Bryant took in the game with his dad yesterday evening, and that’s cool. It was father’s day, after all, and Kobe deserves a vacation, having played in the Beijing Olympics between NBA seasons last summer. But flipping on a baseball game and seeing a guy that you weren’t expecting back in your living room before October was a little weird (I almost didn’t recognize him without his wife or kids standing grimly at his side). He sat in the front row, in front of the dugout, and even appeared on the videoboard at one point.

I’m not saying that the Kobe should never leave his house; I’m just sick of the jock-sniffing that ESPN heaps upon him, seemingly ignoring what everyone else saw during the playoffs: another petulant athlete that tries way too hard to look like a good guy whenever a camera’s in his face. And the Monolith, with its multi-year contract to broadcast NBA games, can’t seem to shove enough cameras in his general direction. They’re happy to do whatever they think will make Kobe look like a good guy, which is the second-best reason to suspect that he isn’t. In fact, ESPN would seem content showing Kobe mowing his lawn, brushing his teeth, or doing anything that doesn’t resemble anally penetrating a 20-year-old woman in a ski lodge. And yet, whenever Bryant pops up on my TV, that’s the only thing I see…


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