“It was a respect thing”: Ex-Knicks G Chris Childs once brutally punched Kobe Bryant on court before being suspended

Kobe Bryant is one of those names in the world of basketball who has become immortal. He is remembered for his signature mamba mentality, which allowed him to achieve success in the NBA. However, his career was not without controversies.

The Black Mamba faced his fair share of problems, including a tension-filled divorce with his wife and allegations that could have ruined one’s career. While some of these situations were off the court, Kobe once found himself in trouble on the court with fellow Knicks player Chris Childs.

Chris Childs once brutally punched Kobe Bryant on court

The game of basketball is very physical and the NBA is a pretty rough league to play in and a player has to be built strong so that he can tank some unintentional or sometimes intentional hits. This situation has calmed down a lot with the recent development in the sport and the updated rules and regulations of the league.

However, the case was different back in the late 90s and early 2000s, the sport was very physical and some players played dirty. A similar situation was faced by Kobe Bryant when he started out as a young player in the league. It was April in the year 2000 and a match was being played between the Knicks and the Lakers.

Bryant played a bit rough when he was a rookie, not fully aware of what he was getting into. According to an interview with Chris Childs on ESPN, Kobe elbowed him a few times, and Childs, in desperation, looked at the referee, expecting action. The referees seemed puzzled and didn’t take any action. Afterward, Chris took matters into his own hands.

He approached Kobe and instructed him not to elbow him, warning that there would be consequences if he continued. Kobe responded with arrogance, challenging Chris, suggesting he wouldn’t follow through. In response, Chris delivered a one-two punch that landed. As a result of the incident, Chris was fined $15,000 and suspended for two games, while Kobe Bryant was fined $5,000 and suspended for one game.

Chris Childs opens up on his notorious incident with Kobe Bryant

Chris Child recently recalled his brawling incident with Kobe Bryant on VladTV. He started talking about the incident after paying respects to Kobe. He said, “First and Foremost Rest in Peace, Kobe. Lost an Ambassador of the game and icon of the game.”

He then proceeded to explain his side of the story and how things unfolded in him and Kobe having a brawl. Chris said, “If you watch the tape, he elbowed me. We run up and down the court and I say, ‘If you do that again, It’s gonna be a problem.’ And he said, ‘What you gonna do about it and the B-word.’ I looked at the referee and said, ‘You gonna do something about this?’ and he did the emoji shrug. I’m like, ‘Okay, no problem, I got this.’ ”

Kobe Bryant
Credits: getty

He further continued, “We get cross-matched again and he pulls another cheap shot. I went to him and he was taller than me so I leaned in with the head to get him off of me but then once he threw that choppy elbow that’s when I thought Let ’em loose. I initiated the punch but he threw the first elbow. We had mutual respect, if I had backed down he would have lost respect for me and if he would have backed down he would have lost respect for him. So it was a respect thing.”

What do you think of this confrontation between Chris Childe and Kobe Bryant? What do you think would have happened if this incident had taken place in 2017? We are eager to know your thoughts so drop them off in the comments section and let us know.

Avi Shravan

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Avi Shravan is an anime, games and sports enthusiast who likes NBA and Soccer. He is an avid reader who loves to write as well. You can find him reading books in a cafe or playing games if he is not watching his favourite team play. You can contact him on [email protected]


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