Donald Trump is an extremely polarising figure in American politics.
Trump has been the reason for many a fight in the average American household. However, in a rare instance, he was the reason preventing a very high-profile fight on his own turf.
Trump famously owned some high-profile real estate prior to his political career taking off. One of which was the Grand Hyatt. And according to famous sports author Jeff Pearlman, the Hyatt was the venue of the fight mentioned earlier.
To be precise, the venue of the fight was a Grand Hyatt elevator. One fine day, said elevator paid host to a few really high-profile NBA names. The late Kobe Bryant, Charles Oakley, and Jayson Williams joined Trump on a trip on the elevator.
In hindsight, one should have noted Jayson Williams’ presence there as a red flag. The former NBA all-star was convicted of the accidental shooting death of a limousine driver and served a 27-month sentence for the same in 2010.
And it was the same Williams who instigated the fight with Kobe at the Grand Hyatt.
Why did Williams and Kobe get into a fight at the Grand Hyatt?
The NBA has some unwritten rules of player conduct. One of which includes how a rookie or a young player has to treat a vet. This of course is informal and varies in treatment from player to player.
However, Williams made no exception for a young, high-flying kid from the Lakers. Kobe Bryant’s nonchalant acknowledgment of Williams, a vet, triggered a meltdown.
Williams, known for his rashness, reportedly did not take well to Kobe’s response to his greeting. According to Pearlman, Williams got enraged and lunged at Kobe and began punching him in the elevator. A shell-shocked Kobe did not respond violently.
Kobe Bryant was set to take a beating down, but Donald Trump came to his rescue. The former US President jumped to break up the fight and got into the middle of the two NBA stars to break up the fight.
It seems very weird to imagine an athletic freak like Kobe needing Donald Trump’s help to stop a beatdown. But it is what it is.