Kobe Bryant stars in Turkish Airlines commercial with Lionel Messi

With his steely glare and expletive-laced rants, Kobe Bryant’s one competitive dude. With his astute observation and playful sarcasm, Bryant’s one funny guy, too.

It all depends one mood Bryant may have that day. But in his latest Turkish Airline commercial, Bryant shows both elements. The plot: Bryant and FC Barcelona soccer standout Lionel Messi wind up on the same flight with a kid eager to have their autograph.

To compete for the kid’s attention, Bryant spins a basketball on his finger. Messi follows suit by juggling. Bryant responds by performing figure eights between his legs. Messi does the same.

On and on it goes before the incident then escalates into both Bryant and Messi stacking decks of cards on top of each other. The kid seems impressed, at least until the flight attendant offers him ice cream.

Both Bryant and Messi seem offended. After all, Bryant won five NBA championships with the Lakers and just surpassed 30,000 career points,. Messi, whom Bryant touts as the world’s best soccer player, won FIFA world player of the year honors three times.

Yet, that’s enough to sway the kid away from a sweet dessert.

But that’s okay. At least the competitive and funny side of Bryant came out on full display in his latest ad.


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Follow L.A. Daily News Lakers beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter.

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