Just watched the Spike Lee documentary Kobe Doin' Work yesterday. A lot of people have been trashing it from what I've read but I enjoyed watching most of it. I think some valid criticism is the choice of games, instead of a playoff game, they went with a regular season game. It didn't have the drama of an NFL Films documentary but I thought it really did get into the mind of Kobe during a game. Here are some random thoughts:
Kobe the Thinker:
The one take away that is obvious is that Kobe meant it when he said, "these young guys are playing checkers. I'm out there playing chess." Kobe is such a cerebral player, he's game planning everything in his head. I think that can be both a blessing or a curse depending on the player. Some guys, you don't want them to be thinking too much, they can think themselves out of just playing basketball. Obviously Kobe is that kind of special player that is probably more knowledgeable then most coaches. Kobe is like an extension of Phil Jackson on the basketball court.
Video at Halftime:
One thing that impressed me was the behind the scenes in the locker room during the halftime. They watch film of the first half and discuss what adjustments they need to make in the second, that's impressive, but it is the NBA after all, what else would you expect.
Discussions with the Refs:
There was also some good bits where Kobe was discussing certain calls with the referees. You see it in the game all the time, so it was good to hear what they actually say. The refs are just regular guys like you and me and there is actually a lot of discussion between the players and the refs, coaches and the refs.
In the second half, Kobe goes through some detail of their triangle offense. I agree with Kobe who says that their Triangle Offense is some mystical formula. It's really just a continuity offense (formation as Kobe calls it) with a series of options. There isn't any set plays Phil Jackson calls, just sequences.
The innovator of the triangle offense, a version of the triple-post continuity is Tex Winter. For more on the triangle, you should look at Tex Winter's DVD on the Encyclopedia of the Triangle Offense. If you've missed seeing Coach Winter on the Lakers sideline recently it is because he is recovering a stroke he suffered a couple of months ago. Hopefully he has a quick recovery. Don't forget to check out the X's and O's Basketball Forum to discuss this and any of your favorite basketball topics.