Explaining Busch's Drop in Nationwide Production
Kobe Bryant is a five-time NBA champion. Three of those Los Angeles Laker championship teams featured Shaquille O’Neal, arguably one of the five best seven-footers to ever play the game. The other two featured Pau Gasol, possibly the best Spaniard to ever play and a former NBA Rookie of the Year and All Star. In those seasons, Bryant cruised; he didn’t need to supply all of the offense or worry about locking down a key opposing player on defense. The Lakers won championships primarily because Bryant didn't have to do all of the heavy lifting.
The 2005-2006 Lakers, of which Bryant was a part, were most definitely not championship caliber. Because of this, Bryant was overly aggressive on offense to make up for a lack of surrounding talent — O’Neal had left and Gasol had yet to arrive — which led to some dizzying scoring on his part. You may remember this as the year Bryant scored 81 points in one game, second only to Wilt Chamberlain’s single-game performance of 100 points in 1962. Bryant attempted 42 field goals in that game, a comparatively high one-game amount for a single player. In addition to the 81 points, that season saw Bryant score 62 points in a game. In 27 of 80 games in which he played, he scored 40 or more points. Of those 80 games, the Lakers won just 45 of them. They made the playoffs but lost in the first round to the Phoenix Suns.
Now … how does this pertain to the NASCAR Nationwide Series?
Kyle Busch in 2011 was pretty much everything you could ever want from a racecar driver. He and the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Nationwide team collected eight victories in 20 starts. He and crew chief Jason Ratcliff had their communication down to a science and Busch’s blowups, for which he is known, were minimized on Saturdays ... Read More
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