Learned Behavior

The rookie class is hearing all about Kobe. Are they listening?

Updated: August 20, 2003, 11:30 AM ET
By By Carmen Thompson | ESPN The Magazine
Ah, beginnings. It's early August in the Knicks' chilly practice gym in Tarrytown, N.Y., and much of the NBA class of '03 is suited up for their rookie trading cards photo op. Just the day before in Eagle, Colo., Kobe Bryant was suited up in a cream-colored linen suit to hear a judge read the sexual assault charges against him. And while Kobe isn't the topic of all the between-shoot chatter -- there were new Hummers and homes for moms and other stuff to talk about -- he wasn't ever far below the radar.