Kobe Bryant is facing off against a past rival. But this time, he’s scoring laughs off the court.
In a clip that went viral on Monday, the retired NBA legend went full Black Mamba mode in an encounter with ESPN analyst Jalen Rose, whom Bryant scorched for 81 points in 2006 when Rose starred on the Toronto Raptors. It’s a fact that the former Los Angeles Laker doesn’t let Rose forget in the new video.
The pair run into each other at a restaurant, and the awkward encounter only gets more tense when a waiter asks Bryant how many olives he wants for his vodka martini. “Eighty-one,” he dryly replies as he stares at Rose. The stand-off ends when Bryant says, “Nah, I’m just playing. Just two. It’s a joke for him… he gets it.”
The video is from Rose’s recent ABC comedy pilot, Jalen vs. Everybody, which didn’t get picked up to series. Yet, in a rare move, the passed-over episode is getting a special airing Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.