After the Lakers' Kobe Bryant became the fifth player in NBA history and the youngest to score 30,000 points, the Internet was atwitter with proclamations that he might be one of the greatest players of all time, if not the greatest.
Scoring a ton of points because you take a ton of shots doesn't automatically make you great, though Bryant joined an incredible, select group of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Karl Malone, Michael Jordan and Wilt Chamberlain. (Best post we saw on Facebook on Thursday: "Fastest way to 30K? Don't pass!")
No question, Bryant is one of the top players of his era, probably the best of the previous decade. But one of the best of all time? Bryant's not even the best Laker ever; we'd give that honor to Magic Johnson.
Our all-time Lakers starting lineup has the twin towers of Chamberlain and Abdul-Jabbar, Johnson at point guard, Jerry West at shooting guard and Elgin Baylor at small forward.
So where does that leave Bryant?
He'd be our super-sub, the first guy off the bench whose primary role would be to fill up the basket, something Bryant clearly relishes.
Bottom line: Arguing about the greatness of players from different eras isn't fair, but who said sports arguments need to be fair?
What to do
High school football, Folsom vs. De La Salle, 7:30 p.m., Sacramento State: With a huge crowd expected for this NorCal Regional Open championship game, the box office opens at 3 p.m. Get there early.
What to watch
Heisman Trophy presentation, 5 p.m., ESPN: Will "Johnny Football" become the first freshman to win college football's most prestigious award?
Who is the greatest Laker ever?
Vote above or leave your comments in the comments field; or go to www.sacbee.com/sports
Who will win Saturday's Folsom-De La Salle showdown?
De La Salle: 49%
Total votes: 268
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Read more articles by Tom Couzens
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