John Wall may be a reserve for tonight's All-Star Game. In fact, he almost decided to sit it out. However, his competitive juices are flowing when he told Jorge Castillo that his goal is to win the All-Star Game MVP Award on Saturday.
Wall has won these types of events before by the way. He was the Rookies vs. Sophomores Game MVP in 2011 AND won the Slam Dunk Contest in 2014. It won't be easy though, because it's Lakers guard Kobe Bryant's last All-Star Game. Wall acknowledged the same. From Castillo's piece:
"I think a lot of people are going to go at him," Wall said. "I think it’s going to be one of those games where early on he’s going to get about 10 shots in five minutes. He’s definitely going to try to win MVP. It’s going to be a lot of fun, a lot of excitement with his last ride. He’s probably going to have a great tribute."
The Wizards star didn't stop there with his praise for Bryant. He spends a lot of his summertime in Los Angeles, and would like to get mentored by the Black Mamba himself who appears to be open to the idea:
"He said, ‘You know where to find me any time,’ " said Wall, whose Wizards will face Bryant one final time on March 27 in Los Angeles. "So I definitely will call him this summer and talk to him and just pick his brain and see how I can become a better player and all the hard work and dedication he did. That’s one person, you can see that sacrificed everything and put it to the side and put the love of basketball first."
Sure, Wall and Bryant aren't the same type of guards. Wall is a pass and defense first guard while Bryant is more of a scorer, but a great defender in his own right. But Bryant has won five NBA titles, an MVP title, and two Olympic Gold Medals in his illustrious career. Our franchise star is as talented as anyone on the court, but it never hurts to be mentored by one of the game's all-time greats, regardless of what position he played in.