Stephen Jackson reacts to Kobe saying he should’ve won the 1996 McDonald’s MVP award….

Stephen Jackson reacts to Kobe saying he should’ve won the 1996 McDonald’s MVP award….

In a surprising and nostalgic turn of events, former NBA player Stephen Jackson has responded to Kobe Bryant’s recent statement that he should have won the 1996 McDonald’s All-American Game MVP award. Bryant’s comment has reignited a decades-old debate among basketball fans and players alike.


The 1996 McDonald’s All-American Game, a showcase of the best high school basketball talent in the United States, featured future NBA stars like Kobe Bryant and Stephen Jackson. Bryant, who scored 13 points in the game, has always maintained that he deserved the MVP award, which ultimately went to Jermaine O’Neal.

In an interview, Bryant reflected on the game and his performance, stating, “I felt like I played well enough to win the MVP. It’s something that’s always stuck with me.”


Stephen Jackson, who also played in the game, responded to Bryant’s comments with a mix of humor and respect. “Kobe was always a competitor, even back then,” Jackson said during a recent podcast. “I remember that game vividly. Kobe did his thing, no doubt. But at the end of the day, Jermaine got the MVP for a reason. It’s all love, though. We all went on to have great careers.”


Jackson’s response highlights the camaraderie and mutual respect among the players from that iconic game. He acknowledged Bryant’s competitive nature and talent while also defending the decision to award O’Neal the MVP.


Fans have taken to social media to weigh in on the debate, with many sharing highlights from the 1996 game and expressing their own opinions on who should have won the MVP. The renewed discussion serves as a reminder of the incredible talent present in that year’s All-American class and the lasting impact those players have had on the sport.


As the conversation continues, it’s clear that the 1996 McDonald’s All-American Game remains a significant moment in basketball history. Bryant’s comments and Jackson’s reaction have brought a fresh perspective to a long-standing debate, adding another layer to the legacy of one of the most memorable high school basketball games ever played.

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