Former Los Angeles Lakers’ player and assistant coach Brian Shaw has a reputation of being a terrific developer of young talent.
The Denver Nuggets head coach assisted both Paul George and Lance Stephenson drastically improve their games whilst he was an assistant coach with the Indiana Pacers. As Dave McMenamin of ESPN LA explains, Shaw has used his experiences with Kobe Bryant to educate and motivate his players.
Shaw spent a total of 10 years among the Lakers, playing with the team from 1999 to 2003 and assisting Phil Jackson from 2005 until 2011. In that time, Shaw was able to pick up the habits and secrets that enabled Kobe to become one of the greatest athletes of his generation. Shaw explains that he has used Kobe as an example while coaching players in the past. He specifically labelled Paul George, an individual that transformed from good to elite in one year, as a player he used this ploy on. When George was seen cutting corners, Shaw would be quick to remind him that Kobe Bryant never took short cuts. This tactic obviously worked, as George has grown into one of the brightest young stars the league has to offer.
Shaw further elaborated on Kobe Bryant’s insane work ethic. He recalls Kobe finishing his own intense workout before team training even started, entering the gym at 6 am. He labels Kobe as a “special individual”, and says that they still catch up regularly, even though they are now opposition.
Even when he’s not playing in games, Bryant is still able to influence the NBA. Things such as this have become the norm when it comes to ‘Bean’. The respect he has garnered around the league, from both players and coaches, is second to none.
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