Roy Hibbert has said he is up for the 'challenge' of playing alongside LA Lakers star Kobe Bryant.
The center was acquired by the Lakers from the Indiana Pacers in exchange for a future second round pick in July this year.
After a disappointing end to his time with his previous team, Hibbert has said he is excited to be playing at the Lakers and he is up for the challenge of playing alongside the 36-year-old.
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He said to Baxter Holmes of ESPN: “Just being able to play with a great [and] being pushed by somebody that has done it and won five championships. I'm up for a challenge. People tell me a lot of different things, how he'll respect me, and I feel like if I go about my business, I can get it done.
“So,” Hibbert says before taking a long pause, “it'll be a challenge. But I'm up for it. I'm not going to speculate on other people and how they interacted with him and their relationships, but I feel like if I put my best foot forward in practices and in games, I don't feel like there will be any tension.
"And I'm the type of person that will be like, ‘Hey, if I did something, let's talk it out,' as opposed to just going back and forth every day.”
Hibbert and Bryant have had their troubles in the past. The center once broke his nose whilst fouling the guard in a game in 2012. After that game, the 28-year-old said on a podcast he talked to Bryant for some sympathy but received none.
Since then, they have cleared the air between one another, and now he is looking forward to playing alongside the 2008 NBA MVP.
This interview is proof Hibbert wants to be a hard worker for the Lakers, something which Bryant will be glad to see. As long as Hibbert returns to his glory days of an world class defender for the Lakers, there shouldn't be any problems between the two any more.
Bryant thinks the Lakers will make the playoffs next season. If Hibbert was able to help him achieve this, he would be loved even more by the five-time NBA Champion.