Last week we saw Los Angeles Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant surpass 30,000 points, and that indeed was a great accomplishment. We also saw Dwight Howard get upset at Bryant multiple times during the same game against the New Orleans Hornets for not rotating on defense. As great of a player as Bryant is, he has to be held accountable just like everyone else.
I am glad Howard showed some fire and actually got into Bryant. Howard is known for smiling on the court a little too much and taking things too easily. Even though his play has always been consistent he is viewed as being too nice. If Howard is going to become the new leader of this team he has to be the one to be able to communicate with everyone including Bryant consistently.
For this Lakers team to take the next step and become elite this season, the defense has to become a priority.
In Howard they have a three-time Defensive Player of the Year and that is his forte. He should be able in charge of the defense on this team similar to how Tyson Chandler is in charge of the New York Knicks defense.
All teams that have serious aspirations in winning a championship play very good team defense. Everyone is accountable to rotate and help their teammate when need be. Like most things team orientated those things take time to develop, but it most happen quickly.
On a team with few players known for their defensive excellence it is going to be a team effort to play collectively and everyone has to be accountable for what they do on that side of the ball, and that includes Mr. Bryant.