Skip to main content

Coach K reveals the promise Kobe made to him at the 2007 Vegas Training Camp


Back in 2007, Kobe Bryant had the reputation of being a great individual player that focuses more on scoring than getting his team wins. His ability to play team basketball, defer to others, and take a role was very questionable, so Kobe's spot in Team USA was a bit of a risk. But a year before the 2008 Olympics, Kobe Bryant made sure Mike Krzyzewski knows he will do everything to help the team win.

The players that were in contention for making the team were skeptical of Kobe's fit, wondering how much he would be willing to give up and help the team. But Coach K shared how at the 2007 Vegas Training Camp, Kobe made his life a lot easier.

"Two days before we started meeting for that team, we were in Vegas as a staff and were planning. Then all of a sudden, there was a knock on the door, and it's Kobe. He's there 2 days early! Again, I'm not embellishing this at all; he [Kobe] said, 'Coach, I'd like to talk to you for a little bit….he continued, "I need for you to do me a favor' and I said, of course, what's the favor, and he [Kobe] said, 'I wanna guard the best perimeter player of very team we face….and I promise you, I'll destroy them!"

Mike Krzyzewski, “The Dream Team Tapes: Kobe, LeBron & The Redeem Team‬” from Diversion Podcasts

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

Coach K compared the look and demeanor Kobe had in that conversation to MJ and Magic. Kobe held to his word, as he proved his determination to the team by not shooting a single shot in their first practice and focusing solely on locking up his matchups. It was the example the coaching staff and the team needed to see, helping them become a true team.

It proved to work perfectly, with Team USA storming to the gold medal and Kobe having a fantastic tournament. He was playing as we have never seen him before. Bryant was picking up guys full court, spotting up and waiting for his shot, but still had that killer instinct in the closing minutes, which the team needed. And when it was most important, in the finals versus Spain, Kobe sealed the game and proved to be a massive part of the "Redeem Team." A team that prided itself in the brotherhood and camaraderie they built between each other.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Basketball Network (

How Ronny Turiaf overcame open heart surgery to get on the court for the Los Angeles Lakers

“They are gonna have to f***ing kill me” - How Ronny Turiaf overcame open heart surgery to get on the court for the Los Angeles Lakers

Turiaf’s physical showed that he needed to have open-heart surgery, and despite being told his career may be over, Turiaf battled and eventually made his way back on the court


Shawn Kemp on why he left the Sonics: 'They weren’t going to pay me $100 million'

In 1997, Shawn Kemp left the Sonics because he felt that he deserves to be paid more. He got the deal he wanted with the Cavs but he eventually lost his desire to play.


Glen Rice lauds a Filipino basketball legend: 'He’s up there...You talk about the Larry Birds, Glen Rices, Steph Currys'

Filipino basketball legend Allan Caidic nailed 14 three-pointers in a friendly game with Glen Rice in 2010. A decade later, "G Money" was still in awe of what he had witnessed from his fellow marksman


"I took it to another level!"-Shaquille O'Neal thinks he was better than Wilt and Kareem

Shaq took inspiration from the great big men and passed them over, in his opinion.

Looming NBA free agency market gave Kyrie Irving a reality check

Kyrie Irving had a reality check with the market

This all relates to the fundamental Kyrie Irving problem; he is unreliable, he doesn't seem fun to play with, and he has a history of bailing on teams. This was simply a reality check for the man operating outside reality.

Draymond Green calls out Skip Bayless in the latest "new media" rant

“People don’t wanna hear that old, dried up, tired stuff that you talking about” -- Draymond Green rips Skip Bayless

The idea of Draymond Green's "new media" movement is to lessen the power of the Steven A. Smiths and Skip Baylesses of the world

Draymond Green admits GSW wouldn’t have won in titles without Kevin Durant

Draymond Green admits GSW wouldn’t have won titles without Kevin Durant: "We would not have beat the Cavs without Kevin”

Draymond Green admits the Golden State Warriors needed Kevin Durant to defeat the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2017 and 2018.