Serge Ibaka #9 of the Oklahoma City Thunder and Metta World Peace #15 of the Los Angeles Lakers exchange words December 7, 2012 at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Oklahoma City defeated Los Angeles 114-108.
The Los Angeles Lakers held practice on Monday following a gritty 99-98 victory over the Atlanta Hawks on Sunday night.
With a difficult road game against Oklahoma City coming up on Tuesday, the Lakers need to show some improvement to have any hope of getting a win against Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and company.
Although the practice discussions mainly revolved around the upcoming game against the Thunder, Lakers practice spiraled into a rather uncomfortable yet entertaining discussion about Los Angeles’ other team.
In particular, the media asked Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard about Thunder forward Serge Ibaka’s nasty below the belt hit on Clippers forward Blake Griffin.
Howard said he had not seen the play, but he certainly did not have trouble understanding the situation once the media briefly informed him of what had happened.
“You got to wear a cup,” Howard said before breaking out in laughter.
Howard was later asked about Bryant’s work ethic and if he anything he had learned from playing alongside one of the greatest to ever play the game.
“He goes hard,” Howard described Bryant’s play. “Balls out: Serge Ibaka.”
Again, Howard broke out in laughter, and the media was not far behind.
Bryant was also asked about the dirty Ibaka-Griffin play, and he said he had seen it. Unlike Howard, Bryant was much more serious with his response.
“I probably would have smacked him in the mouth,” Bryant said. “I would have dealt with the pain after.”
The Lakers face Ibaka and the Oklahoma City Thunder on Tuesday evening, but the NBA has yet to hand down punishment. Regardless of whether Ibaka plays or not, the Lakers will be in Oklahoma City on Tuesday evening.