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Kobe Bryant Confirms He Wanted Trade To Bulls In 2007

(CBS) It's a long-lost subject forgotten by most after the Lakers were rejuvenated with the addition of Pau Gasol in 2008 and later marched to back-to-back NBA titles, but a disgruntled Kobe Bryant once wanted a trade out of Los Angeles.

And when that rumor mill was churning back in 2007, the Bulls were involved. Heavily involved, in fact, as Bryant confirmed on the "Grantland Basketball Hour" on Sunday.

"Chicago was my No. 1 choice," Bryant said when asked where he wanted to be traded.

Back then when Bryant requested a trade in spring 2007, the Bulls were nearing the end of Scott Skiles era, coming off a 49-33 campaign in 2006-'07 but on a path toward mediocrity in the seasons that followed. They went 33-49 in 2007-'08, then posted back-to-back 41-41 seasons.

A student of the game's history, Bryant always held Michael Jordan in great regard and loved the spotlight of the big city and historic franchises, but the trade never came to fruition, reportedly because Chicago didn't want to include forward Luol Deng in the deal.

Bryant also put a stop to a trade to the Pistons, saying Detroit didn't appeal to him.

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