Kobe would love to trade for Kidd
A few years ago, it was, “When are the Timberwolves going to get past the first round of the playoffs?” Then, after the Wolves made it to the Western Conference Finals in 2004, it became, “When are you going to win a championship?” But the questions have turned gloomier now that Minnesota has missed the playoffs for two straight years. More like, “Can you win in Minnesota?” or “Do you need to win a championship to cement your legacy?” Garnett plays it cool for the most part, but it’s obvious the team’s struggles are starting to get to him. “I’m pretty sure, until you win a championship, that’s going to be the next question,” Garnett said. “It’s like, when you’re single, people ask, when you’re going to get a girlfriend. Then when you get a girlfriend, they ask when you’re going to get married. After you you get married, they ask when you’re going to have kids. So you have to ask, “Can you get it done in Minnesota?” “We’ll see,” he said, adding a wink. Kobe international: Plenty of NBA players draw large crowds of international media. Dirk Nowitzki draws a pack of German reporters. Yao Ming has a small army of Chinese media following him. But Lakers’ guard Kobe Bryant, who will start at point guard for the West in today’s All-Star Game, seems to be a hit all over the world. At Saturday’s media session, reporters from China, Guatemala, India and Israel asked Bryant to say hello to fans back home in their countries. He’s generally a good sport and takes a stab at try to pronounce his message in other languages. “So far, I’d say there have been about 10 countries,” Bryant said. “I’ve said hi in Spanish, (Hebrew), German, Chinese. I don’t think I’ve done Polish yet.” Asked why he seems to be so popular overseas, Bryant joked, “I don’t know. Maybe there’s no one else to talk to.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! LAS VEGAS – Unwieldy contract be damned. Bad back? No problem. Kobe Bryant isn’t thinking about any of the negatives attached to a trade for Nets point guard Jason Kidd. “This team is young, and if you have the opportunity to bring a player like Jason Kidd in, that’s something you definitely definitely have to look at,” Bryant said Saturday before the West All-Star team practiced at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center. “I hear all the talks going on. I don’t know the seriousness of it, or the possibility of it, but it’s still exciting. Stern wants New Orleans progress: NBA commissioner David Stern had some pointed words for politicians in New Orleans, the site of next year’s All-Star Game, saying the NBA was committed to the Hornets but disappointed in the city’s slow recovery from Hurricane Katrina. “Although politics and government are not our beat, it sure would be nice to see a plan, completely unrelated to basketball, to deal with issues for the people of New Orleans that haven’t been dealt with. “We want to be good citizens, but we’d like to see just something that takes care of the displaced people. That place hasn’t really made a lot of progress, because it really is not going to be that much fun to be there if progress hasn’t been made. “I think we can probably make it work and we’re very optimistic about that. But it doesn’t make me feel so good when I go down there and see the inaction for the people in New Orleans. We’re not going to be part of the problem. We’re going to be part of the solution if there’s a will in Louisiana and New Orleans to solve the issues. Next question: Kevin Garnett gets a lot of the same questions. “If something is coming down the pipe, we’ll definitely talk about it.” Kidd, who is 34 next month, is due $41 million dollars over the next two seasons so acquiring him would probably force the Lakers to pay luxury taxes.