Kobe Bryant said he understands the frustration of being a great player and not being able to win a championship. (Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images)
Kobe Bryant won't be actively recruiting Carmelo Anthony to join him in Los Angeles this summer, but Bryant said Sunday that he'll be happy to give Anthony advice "as a friend" during the free-agent process.
"Well, everybody wants to play in Los Angeles," Bryant said before the Lakers' 110-103 loss to the Knicks on Sunday, according to NBA.com. "I mean New York is a beautiful place, don't get me wrong, but it is colder than [expletive] out here. You know, palm trees and beaches obviously are a little more appealing.
"All jokes aside, I think that players, when that time comes, will have to make the best decision for them and their families. I try not to think about it too much. If he wants to call me for advice later as a friend, I will be more than happy to give it to him."
Anthony is set to become a free agent, and both Los Angeles teams have been offered as potential landing spots should he decide to leave New York. If Anthony does decide to exit New York, he would leave the possibility of an extra year and about $32 million on the table under the rules of the collective bargaining agreement, according to the New York Post.
Bryant suggested that he understood Anthony's frustration with being known more as a "scorer" while he remains championship ringless.
“He’s a great player just like the rest of them,’’ Bryant said, according to the Post. “He’s obviously on the upper tier of players. It’s tough for players a lot of times, you’re really subject to the culture around you in terms of players and talent like players from the past Dominique Wilkins and Bernard King. It contribute to a lot of frustrations.
“That’s why I was so frustrated with the organization in 2006 and 2007 because I didn’t want to be known as a scorer. I wanted to make sure I had a team around me that could contend for a championship. The important thing is championships. It’s the only way you can shake it, only way a top scorer can shake it."