Very few players have ever accomplished enough in their NBA careers to be compared to Michael Jordan. Perhaps no player has come as close to equaling Jordan as Kobe Bryant himself.
Other than their similar physical attributes and accomplishments, the two are also very similar mentally, pushing themselves to great limits when no one thinks they have anything left.
Phil Jackson coached both great players and had shared a story about Kobe meeting Jordan and saying that he would beat him one-on-one. On Jimmy Kimmel Live, Bryant didn’t completely dispute the story, and according to Lakers Nation reporter Serena Winters, did have some words for Jordan later in their careers:
Kobe: "I normally try to stay pretty cool when it comes to MJ…" but says "he did remind him that he had 42 in one half against him'
— Serena Winters (@SerenaWinters) May 9, 2014
The game Bryant is referring to is from March of 2003 in their final game against each other. Bryant scored 42 in the first half, and 55 points total, in the Lakers 108-94 win over the Washington Wizards. Jordan scored 23 in the game.
Jordan is well known for his trash talk and he has almost definitely given Kobe a lot of grief over previous games between the two. Jordan is not the type to forget games like this, so it’s likely that Bryant will be able to remind Jordan of this for a long time.
Magic Johnson may prefer Jordan over Kobe and Phil Jackson may agree, but it was Kobe who got the last laugh between the two, and he has no problem reminding Jordan of that.
VIDEO: Kobe Bryant On Jimmy Kimmel Live!