The Los Angeles Lakers' decision to draft D'Angelo Russell with the second overall pick of the 2015 NBA Draft may have grabbed the headlines last Thursday but it is fair to say their second selection has been a talking point in the days since.
Larry Nance Jr may have been pinching himself when the Lakers selected him in the second round, but, with the resurfacing of an old tweet in which he called franchise legend Kobe Bryant a "#rapist", he may have forgiven for feeling a little uneasy about arriving at Staples Center.
And now Bryant himself, not known to be the most forgiving of teammates, has spoken publicly on the rookie's outspoken remarks.
Speaking during an appearance at the BET Experience, Bryant revealed he was more than happy to overlook the faux-pas, telling Nance Jr so after receiving a humble message of apology from the former Wyoming forward:
"It was really nice and apologetic about what had happened," Bryant said of the email.
"I said, 'Dude, listen. We've all said things and done things that we regret and wish we could take back. It's water under the bridge, man. Welcome to the team.'"
Kobe Bryant may now see the message as water under the bridge but there were some who clearly felt the need to bring it back up once they knew Nance Jr's future lay in Los Angeles. The tweet in question has since been deleted but not before screenshots captured the moment a young NBA-hopeful mocked Kobe Bryant back in 2012.
Kobe Bryant was arrested on allegations of sexual assault back in 2003 when awaiting surgery in Denver but the case was later dropped, after the accuser elected against testifying in court.
Bryant's reputation as a tough task master often proceeds him and, as such, there were those (Nance Jr probably included) who were concerned the rookie's social media activity could put him at odds with the face of the Lakers franchise.
Instead, rather than being angry, it looks like Kobe was more concerned with the fact the rookie addressed him as "Mr. Bryant" and "Sir" when apologizing last week.
"This is when you know it's about time to hang these things up, when your teammate writes you, Hi, Mr. Bryant."..."I was like, 'What the f---?'"
Kobe's mellowing in old age has come just at the right time for Larry Nance Jr who might be advised to be a little more candid with his tweets from here on out.
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