Tapped by Kobe: Was Phoenix Suns Coach Alvin Gentry Joking, or Part of the Joke?

May 30th, 2010 by Toby Marcell Leave a reply »
With 34.2 left in the fourth quarter of an elimination game of the Western Conference Finals, Suns coach Alvin Gentry watched the Lakers’ Kobe Bryant double-pump a 22-foot jumper.

As Kobe lurched and fired, turning to balance himself slightly to the right as his defender slung leftward to meet him, the shot fell neatly behind the front of the rim despite the frantic defense of Grant Hill, and provided a 107-101 lead for a Lakers team that would eventually succeed to a chance at the Celtics, and an NBA title.

The weird part was that immediately after that shot, Kobe turned and tapped Suns coach Alvin Gentry on the leg as if to say, “So, how’d you like that!?”

The weirder part was that the coach seemed to be in on the joke.

He laughed and smiled as Kobe turned downcourt, seemingly satisfied with the shot…and the joke.

My question?

Is Coach Gentry’s reaction, which, remember, is happening in the final 30 seconds of the Western Finals, offensive, debasing, and debilitating to team moral for a group that is playing for its life?

Or is it a good-natured reaction to a p ...

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