Kobe Bryant responds to Jim Brown’s comments made on Arsenio Hall Show

NFL Hall of Fame running back Jim Brown had some not-so-flattering things to say about Kobe Bryant during an interview on the Arsenio Hall Show on Tuesday night. For one thing, he said, Bryant “threw Shaq under the bus,” referring to former Lakers teammate Shaquille O’Neal. The worst was yet to come.

Here is more of the dialogue of that interview.

“He is somewhat confused about culture because he was brought up in another country, so it doesn’t quite fit with what’s happening in America,” Brown said of Bryant, who lived in Italy for several years as a youth, but played high school ball in Philadelphia. Brown referred to Bryant as “an unbelievable athlete,” but also said, “In the days when we had a summit and we called the top black athletes together to talk to Muhammad Ali about his status with the armed forces, there were some athletes we didn’t call. So if I had to call that summit all over, there would be some athletes I wouldn’t call. And Kobe would be one of them.”

Bryant’s first response was via twitter: A “Global” African American is an inferior shade to “American” African Americans?? .. that doesn’t sound very or sir.

Bryant on Thursday was asked about the whole thing. The first thing he did was admit to being somewhat astonished by Brown’s comments.

“Well, I mean, it surprised me because it just came out of left field,” Bryant said after practice. “I’ve never even met him, so it came out of left field. But I do think it’s a great opportunity to have these conversations and this discussion. No matter where you come from, whether you come from Italy, whether you come from  Inglewood , whether you come from London, it doesnt matter. Ultimately, the conversation is it doesnt matter what color skin you are to begin with.

“But I think its a good place to start and have a good conversation and try to educate one another and try to improve as a society from it.”

Bryant was asked if he would like to have that discussion with Brown.

“No, there’s nothing to talk about,” he said. “We have different perceptions, different views on it, clearly. So the thing that I try to do is always, what I’ve been trying to do, is try to educate our youth going forward, no matter what color skin you are – African American, white or whatever the case may be.

“Just try to talk about having a bright future and how to help the kids going forward, progress as a society as a whole. So he and I, there’s no reason for us to have a conversation because we’re on opposite sides of the spectrum. I’m an old dog, but he’s a much older dog, so he’s probably a lot more set in his ways than I am.”

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  • Rumar Spencer

    That’s just the Mamba speaking his mind, when he chooses to address something, he goes for it.

  • framinghammer

    It’s a good place to start and have a conversation. . . but then he goes on to say he wouldn’t talk to the guy. Hypocrite.

    • TommieSmith

      Kobe might be an “old dog” (his words) when it comes to being a pro athlete but he’s a soon to be born pup when it comes to life after pro sports, both of which are things Jim Brown knows a lot about. That’s Kobe, proud, stubborn and ignorant. Heck, even then base head Richard Pryor had enough sense to listen to Jim Brown’s advice, what does that tell you about Kobe’s ego and his arrogance?

  • Smiles

    JB lived in an era where black civil rights were at epic volatility (they were rioting in many cities) so his sensitivity and conviction to civil rights is appreciated and acknowledged. KB’s perspective is the result of successful activists such as jB and has evolved to help the future of all young and the homeless. They both should be commended for using their fame by putting forth efforts for the good of society. Thank you JB and KB.