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Stephen A. Smith dubs Devin Booker “the Next Kobe Bryant”

Photo: Michael Gonzales/NBAE via Getty Images

Photo: Michael Gonzales/NBAE via Getty Images

Devin Booker electrified the basketball world yesterday afternoon with his first career triple-double in Game One of the Western Conference Finals.

His 40-point triple-double in Chris Paul’s absence willed the Phoenix Suns to a 120-114 victory. His performance of course drew national attention and high praise, but the former ‘Cat may have gotten the highest praise imaginable from ESPN megastar Stephen A. Smith.

This morning on First Take Smith took to the national audience to tell the world: Devin Booker is the next Kobe Bryant.

“I’m saying it on national television, Devin Booker is the next Kobe Bryant,” Smith proclaimed. “It is official. His first playoff performance and the brother is the number one option. Averaging 28, dropped 40 in a triple-double in the first game of the conference finals. The way he plays, he’s an assassin.”

Laker legend Magic Johnson was in agreement as well.

Booker’s idolization of the late legend is well documented, as well. In Booker’s only matchup with Bryant he went right at the black mamba with his signature move, something Kobe admitted admiring in the postgame interview.

After the game, Bryant gifted Booker with a pair of shoes saying “be legendary”. Now, Booker writes the same mantra on his shoes before every game and playing like his childhood idol.

Article written by Brent Wainscott

Twitter: @BrentWainscott_

10 Comments for Stephen A. Smith dubs Devin Booker “the Next Kobe Bryant”

  1. nocode96
    10:23 pm June 21, 2021 Permalink

    I love Book, but let’s pump the brakes just a bit.

  2. ukwildcat1991
    10:32 pm June 21, 2021 Permalink

    Kobe Bryant has said that devin booker has the potential to be the next great…

  3. mashman 93
    10:57 pm June 21, 2021 Permalink

    Not yet.

  4. CahillsCrossingNT
    6:24 am June 22, 2021 Permalink

    Bryant wouldn’t have lost to Wisconsin. The Kentucky coach is to blame for that loss of course, not Booker. However, had Bryant been there Kentucky would’ve won. Smith is a total idiot for making that kind of comparison.

    • Skooms
      7:20 am June 22, 2021 Permalink

      That has gotta be one of the more idiotic responses you’ve had Chaill, and that’s saying a lot! If we had Kobe on the team we beat Wisconsin?? Ya think?? What if we had Kobe, but Wiscy had MJ?? I mean seriously, I get what you’re saying, but if Cal had rode Ulis and Booker instead of the twins, we wouldn’t need Kobe. In that case, yes Booker on the team would have probably beaten Wisconsin. I actually agree with you on Cal in regards to that game. What does it have to do with Booker potentially being the next Kobe??

    • Thetruthshallsetbennyfree
      7:20 am June 22, 2021 Permalink

      Once again you prove your sports acumen is lacking, Kobe didn’t go undefeated in his career, and Booker is way better than he was in college.

    • Skooms
      7:24 am June 22, 2021 Permalink

      Oh and put an 18 year old. Kobe on the that UK team, and……….. yeah sorry, I don’t see the results being any different if you swapped him with Book. The Truth’s comment below is 100% correct in my opinion.

    • Middy
      10:33 am June 22, 2021 Permalink

      WTF are you talking about Cahill! Did you even watch that game? The fact that Cal sat Booker in favor of Aaron Harrison for far too many minutes must have escaped you. It’s hard to blame Cal because of Aaron’s tournament heroics the previous year, but everyone knew Booker was the better player for the latter part of 2015. The dude is tough and only getting better. Booker has the tools and mindset to be as great as Kobe. The Suns have the best team remaining. If he leads them to a title, I’d say Stephen is on point. I’d also say Murray isn’t far from making a breakthrough either. Had he not suffered an injury we’d be watching them face off in the Western Conference Finals. Too bad that didn’t happen!!

  5. Duuuuuude
    7:36 am June 22, 2021 Permalink

    Kobe would have been platooned just as every other UK great was on that team so it wouldn’t have mattered.

  6. GM1978
    9:12 am June 22, 2021 Permalink

    Cue the Winston Wolf quote…..