Sacramento’s Caron Butler calls his friendship with Kobe Bryant “special”

first_imgKobe Bryant walked swiftly out of the Lakers’ locker room before stopping suddenly. Sacramento Kings forward Caron Butler stood there, the man Bryant moments earlier had described glowingly as “my brother.”The two might have only played together for one season during the 2004-05 campaign, but Bryant said they have stayed “extremely close” amid Butler’s various stints in Washington (2005-10), Dallas (2010-11), the Clippers (2011-12), Milwaukee (2013-14), Oklahoma City (2014), Detroit (2014-15) and Sacramento, which handed the Lakers a 112-93 loss on Wednesday at Staples Center. So close that Bryant wrote the foreword of Butler’s recently released biography written by Steve Springer, a book Bryant called “fantastic.”“He was like my little brother. Now he’s the big brother over there,” Bryant said. “It’s been great to see his development. It’s great to see his growth. I’m very, very proud of him.”So proud of him that Bryant has called him one of his favorite teammates, along with Pau Gasol, Derek Fisher and Ronny Turiaf. How does Bryant explain viewing Butler in such terms after playing one season in which the Lakers missed the playoffs for the first time in 11 years? “We just always talked,” Butler said. “A lot of people don’t communicate and don’t talk. They would get on the buses and they’re in their own world. But I always was picking his brain. I learned and saw things from his point of view and the circumstances he was going through.” The reasons for Butler’s inquisitiveness seemed obvious. Butler wanted to learn anything he could from Bryant, whom Butler considered “the closest thing to Michael Jordan that we’ve seen in our generation.”Bryant’s receptiveness made Butler feel “special.” Butler reported Bryant “was always available,” whether it entailed answering those questions, working out together late at night or seeking personal help. Butler sensed Bryant became open toward sharing those moments after because of two things. Bryant respected Butler’s work ethic. Bryant also soon learned Butler’s life story that entailed spending his teenage years as a drug peddler, in a juvenile attention center and in prison before changing his life. “When I first came into the NBA, I never shared my story with anybody,” Butler said. “But when Kobe came to my house and saw me around my environment, I think he saw a lot more of the other side of my life and how I approached the way I played. I was always prompt with practice. I never quit on drills or anything like that.” Bryant also saw one of Butler’s vices, which entailed drinking Mountain Dew. “He’d be like, ‘What are you drinking that stuff for?’” Butler recalled Bryant saying. “He was always talking about taking care of yourself and taking care of your body.” Bryant and Butler have kept in touch through the good and bad. The two dined together when the Lakers visited Sacramento two weeks ago. Bryant and Butler also consoled each other after a preseason game in October when both learned that former Lakers teammate Lamar Odom was taken to a nearby hospital after losing consciousness at a Nevada brothel. Bryant visited him that night.“It was sad and it was real frustrating,” Butler said. “It was good to know that Lamar had somebody who cared about him.”It was also good for Butler to know that Bryant has viewed him with similar affection. Hence, the two chatted for a few minutes in a Staples Center hallway before giving each other a big hug. “Life after basketball, he’s a friend that I have for life,” Butler said of Bryant. “We are forever connected. For him to support me and be someone I could always call a friend, that is special.”ETC.Forbes valued the Lakers at $2.7 billion, making them the second-most valuable NBA franchise behind the New York Knicks ($3 billion) … Bryant has the third-highest selling jersey behind Golden State’s Stephen Curry and Cleveland’s LeBron James. The Lakers boasted the fourth-most popular jersey sales overall. … Lakers forward Julius Randle recently landed an endorsement deal with Mountain Dew. “He and I hit it off really well with guys that shoot straight from the hip,” Bryant said. “They don’t BS you and do silly stuff. Because of that, he and I have been extremely close from Day One.”From Day One, the preconceptions Butler once held about Bryant quickly evaporated. Shortly after the Miami Heat traded Butler to the Lakers as part of the Shaquille O’Neal trade in 2004, Bryant became eager to teach Butler anything he wanted to know. Bryant soon visited Butler at his mother’s house in his hometown of Racine, Wisconsin for a dinner that featured about 30-40 family members and friends. Nearly a decade later, Butler called Bryant writing the foreword of his book “one of the biggest moments of my life.” “People always said he was not easy to be around,” Butler told Los Angeles News Group. “That was totally wrong.”Butler saw a different side of Bryant simply by showing his curious nature. center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more

‘Drunken’ Policeman granted bail for causing death of 10-year-old

first_imgA 26-year-old Police Constable Ravinand Bissessar, of Good Intent, West Bank Demerara (WBD), on Thursday appeared before Magistrate Clive Nurse at the Wales Magistrate’s Court to answer to two charges – causing death by dangerous driving and Driving Under the Influence (DUI).Police Constable Ravinand BissessarThe Policeman was not required to plead to the causing death by dangerous driving charge which stated that on May 15 at Sisters Village, WBD, while driving motor car PLL 222, he struck down 10-year-old Davin Sealey, who was riding a bicycle along the roadway, resulting in the child’s death.A breathalyser test conducted on Bissessar after the accident revealed that he had .66 micrograms of alcohol in his system, which is above the legal limit.On the DUI charge, the accused initially pleaded guilty when it was read to him. However, his Attorney, Mark Conway interjected and disputed the breathalyser test result presented and said that another test conducted at the hospital proved there was no alcohol in his client’s system.Magistrate Nurse subsequently entered a not guilty plea on Bissessar’s behalf.In his bail application, Attorney Conway said that his client was not a flight risk, was remorseful and had lived at the same location for the past 22 years.The prosecution had no objection to bail being granted on the condition that the defendant’s driver’s licence is suspended for the duration of the trial.The Policeman was placed on $600,000 bail for the causing death charge and self-bail for the DUI.Bissessar was also ordered to report to the Wales Police Station on a weekly basis while his licence was suspended.He will return to court on June 22, 2016.According to initial Police reports, on the day in question, Bissessar, who was stationed at the Wales Police Station, was attempting to negotiate a turn at Sisters Village when he lost control of the vehicle and slammed into a parked car, before hitting the lad who was riding along the roadway.The Policeman’s car came to a stop after it crashed into a utility pole.The young man was said to be on his way to meet his father at the time of the accident.Guyana Times understands that a post-mortem examination revealed that the young Sealey died as a result of multiple injuries to his body.last_img read more