Dwight Howard gives verdict on Kobe Bryant and LeBron James leadership styles
Dwight Howard is one of the very few NBA players who shared the dressing room with both LeBron James and Kobe Bryant. Apart from his impressive performance in the NBA, the American basketballer also earned a gold medal along with both LeBron and Bryant at the Beijing Olympics back in 2008. Howard had recently appeared on “My Expert Opinion” show and the eight-time All-Star talked about the differences between LeBron and Kobe’s leadership styles. Howard recalled that Kobe used to always be quite serious with his teammates, whereas, he felt easy around LeBron.
“LeBron’s almost at like somebody from the south side of Georgia. We actin’ kind of like twins. Joking, silly, have a good time. We get on the court, we still gonna have a good time but we’re gonna dominate. Kobe ain’t bull—tting with nobody. He might not come in the locker room and talk. Everybody is like, ‘So he’s gonna walk all the way past us, not dap anybody up, give a head nod, or nothing?’ He would just walk past us. That’s just how he would come in. I guess, because now looking back on it, he was probably just doing it to get everybody ready for practice because we were too loud. He’d come in there, and we’re joking around and laughing. He was just different in his approach,” Howard recalled.
Howard’s triple Lakers stint
Dwight Howard established himself in the NBA having represented Orlando Magic eight seasons. Howard was a three-time Defensive Player of the Year during his glorious stint at Orlando. He was traded to Los Angeles Lakers in 2012. In terms of individual performance, both Howard and Kobe Bryant performed well while playing together for the Lakers. Though, their numbers proved to be not sufficient to win the NBA championship for the Lakers that season. While Howard registered 17.1 points, 12.4 rebounds, and 1.4 assists per game in the 2012-13 season, Bryant secured an average of 27.3 points along with 5.6 rebounds, and 6.0 assists. Lakers could only manage to reach the first round and were eliminated by San Antonio Spurs.
Dwight Howard returned to Los Angeles Lakers in the summer of 2019 to reunite with LeBron James. Howard, in his mid-30s by then, was not considered as a key figure but he still managed to put up some crucial performances. In the 2019-20 season, he averaged 7.5 points and 7.3 rebounds per game over 69 regular-season matches. The Lakers, under the leadership of LeBron, had gone on to win the NBA championship. This was also Howard’s first NBA championship. Later in 2020, Howard was signed by Philadelphia 76ers.
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