Smush Parker fired back at ex-teammate Kobe Bryant. (Bill Baptist/NBAE via Getty Images)
Former Los Angeles Lakers point guard Smush Parker called Kobe Bryant a bad teammate and claimed he stopped passing the superstar the ball, on Hard 2 Guard Internet radio and TMZ.
Bryant yesterday ripped Parker's lack of talent, going so far as to saying the point guard cost Bryant the 2005-06 MVP trophy to new teammate Steve Nash.
"I tell Steve, you won MVP but I was playing with Smush Parker," Bryant said before the Lakers' 93-75 exhibition loss Wednesday to the Portland Trail Blazers at Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario. "He's playing with [Leandro] Barbosa. I'm playing with Smush and Kwame [Brown]. My goodness.
"Smush Parker was the worst," Bryant said. "He shouldn't have been in the NBA, but we were too cheap to pay for a point guard. We let him walk on."
Parker fired back on Thursday:
“What I don’t like about him is the man that he is. His personality. How he treats people. I don’t like that side of Kobe Bryant….
“The reason I wasn’t a Laker after my second year is because I didn’t bow down to [Kobe]. I didn’t kiss his a–. I wasn’t kissing his feet. Quite frankly, towards the end of the second season, I stopped passing him the ball. I stopped giving him the ball. I started looking him off.”
Parker offered anecdotes that made Bryant appear aloof, such as isolating himself at the back of the Lakers plane, sitting at his own table surrounded by security guards during a team bonding dinner before a playoff series and telling Parker he needed to earn more NBA accolades before he could talk to Bryant.