INSIDE THE LAKERS gets an earful from Kobe, as the L.A. hoop star tees off about getting tossed from Sunday night’s win over Seattle - Bryant’s first ejection of his season:
With about 4 minutes left in the 3rd quarter, Bryant was given a technical by official Brian Forte after complaining about a non-call. When Kobe wouldn’t keep his mouth quiet, Forte slapped on a 2nd ‘T’ and bid Kobe a fond farewell.
But Bryant says he’s innocent. However, Phil Jackson warns his star player about igniting family feuds.
Kobe: “First tech, I didn’t say anything. I did not say a word to (Forte). Second tech was a different story. Someone grabbed my arm. We go down the other end of the floor and the next thing I know, I’ve got a tech.”
Meanwhile, Jackson said he warned Kobe about exchanging words with Forte, as his dad - fellow NBA official Joe Forte - might remember the next time he calls a Lakers game:
“I told (Bryant) he shouldn’t jump on Junior. His dad might carry a grudge against him. That’s nepotism in our league. That’s Joe Forte’s son. He’s got a little bit of the red-ass as we say.”
“Bit of the red-ass?” Earlier this season, Phil described playing the Spurs like something out of “Brokeback Mountain” (”There’s so much penetration and kickouts“). And now this. Maybe Jackson’s been spending too much time meditating in West Hollywood.
And when he hears the “red-ass” comments about officials, expect commish David Stern to get red-faced himself - and take a chunk out of Phil’s paycheck.