Yeah, it was all Kobe's fault. The rest of the team outside of Shaq shooting 33%, Malone injured, Shaq's lazy play defensively and on the boards, Payton's atrocious play and having a weak bench had nothing to do with it. It's all Kobe's fault. Yup, he shot the Lakers out of a championship, that's why the biggest blow-out loss came in the game where he only had 13 shots, right?
What a moron.
Don't remake your own history by looking up some box scores. Anyone can do that.
Lakers assistant coach Tex Winter: "Shaq defeated himself against Detroit. He played way too passively. He had one big game ... He's always interested in being a scorer, but he hasn't had nearly enough concentration on defense and rebounding."
Now nobody would claim Kobe had a good, or even respectable series for a player of his caliber. His shot selection in particular was terrible (but at least he played good defense in that series) But it wasn't only that, Tex Winter criticized Shaq's play in that series for being lazy on defense and the glass, and not establishing position in the paint... and Shaq only had the one great game that series.
Shaq wasn't getting in position to get the ball. (when he did he was able to score though). But even if you look at the game where Kobe wasn't looking to score, Shaq still couldn't get off. That's why Phil made the comment about wasting Shaq's great game cause he knew Shaq couldn't bring that level of energy every game. Karl Malone was hurt. Gary Payton was a bad fit and even criticized the triangle offense that year. And the Lakers really had no one else to take those shots so of course it was left to Kobe to gun, it wasn't him all just forcing up bad shots.
The Lakers own coaches came out saying how Shaq wasn't working for position and wasn't working to get the ball. You can make the judgment on if that was just Shaq pouting cause he wasn't getting the ball enough or you can credit Detroit's defense. Shaq had some great offensive games but was slow defensively coming off the pick and Rip Hamilton and Chauncy got to the rim at will. Payton averaged 4 ppg on 32% shooting in that series and looked slow defensively as Billups torched him for 21 ppg on 51% shooting and 47% on 3s. Malone was limping around that whole series. He couldn't contribute due to his injury and was a non-factor. Neither played at any notable level that series. To completely blame Kobe for losing is absolutely ridiculous considering the level they were actually at during that series. Malone due to being a 40/41 year old playing through an injury, and Payton was just embarrassingly incompetent.