ESPN Host: Rape Charges Helped Kobe Bryant ‘Sizzle’

Stephen A. Crockett Jr.
Then-Cold Pizza host Skip Bayless on the ESPN set in Miami Feb. 1, 2007
Allen Kee/Getty Images

Looks like the guys over at ESPN's First Take may need to take sensitivity courses in women's issues ASAP, especially if they're going to venture into issues involving domestic violence and rape.

Just a few months back, Stephen A. Smith alluded to the fact that women shouldn't provoke men into violent confrontations. Now Skip Bayless believes that Kobe Bryant's 2003 rape charges, in which the basketball star was accused of sexually assaulting a 19-year-old in a hotel room in Colorado, added to his street cred—thus making him more marketable.


"Remember Kobe pre-Eagle, Colorado? He failed in his first sneaker deal because he was just too clean-cut, and I think it was Adidas that had him first—correct me if I'm wrong—but he couldn't sell sneakers because he didn't have enough edge," Bayless said. "But then, post-Eagle, Colorado, it brought a little attention to him—like it gave him a little bit of sizzle." 

Host Cari Champion looked visibly stunned at Bayless' take. She quickly followed the segment with, "All right, we are going to leave it right there." And Smith seemed to be actually biting his tongue. No, seriously—you can see indentations in his cheek where it appears that Smith is actually biting his tongue.


Watch below:

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