If you had to pick the 2 most competitive NBA players of this century, chances are that those 2 players would be Kobe Bryant and Chris Paul.
CP3 has had many monikers given to him by peers, fans and competitors. The man has been addressed as the Point God on numerous occasions over the past decade or so.
There are a plethora of reasons for why Chris Paul is held in such high regard. The number 1 reason for this is the fact that he’s willing to outhustle and outmaneuver his opponents.
When CP3 goes out on the floor, the one thing that he’s looking to ensure is a dub for his team. It could be through his playmaking, shooting, defense, basketball IQ or even just his mere presence. But the man adds to winning cultures like few other NBA legends of this time or any.
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That’s one of the reasons why neutral fans were so gutted to see the CP3 trade to the Lakers fall through. This trade would have put the 2 most competitive guards of the 21st century alongside each other.
The idea of Kobe Bryant and Chris Paul playing together down the former’s career home stretch is one of the biggest what-ifs in league history – by far.
Chris Paul recalls how he and Kobe Bryant beat down on the East All-Star team in 2009
CP3 was on the Knuckleheads podcast last year before the NBA bubble started. The Clippers legend and 15-year-veteran (at that point) talked about a famous Kobe incident, where he and the Black Mamba displayed their competitive nature to the fullest:
“Man, so Kobe was what they called it…different animal, same beast? We both liked that, we were crazy competitive. We used to get into it, hell I get into it with most of the people I’ve played against. But with Kobe, there was a respect factor, right?”
“So when we went into the All-Star Game and, you know, even aside from the fact that the winning team gets a little bit more money than the losing team, it’s a game, right? So I don’t wanna be out there all…I’m trying to win, right? And Kobe used to be on the same thing, which was dope.”
“I’ll never forget the 09 All-Star Game in Phoenix. We beat the hell out of the East team, they were so mad! Cuz they were all like we need to play for the fans or something…well, y’all need to play harder!”