Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard were two of the biggest stars in the NBA during the late 2000s and the excitement was palpable when the two joined forces on the Los Angeles Lakers in 2012.

Howard's stint with the Lakers failed, and things went sour between him and Bryant, with Dwight admitting later that there was a point in his life where he hated Kobe.

The tension between them came to a head in 2014 when Howard was on the Rockets, he elbowed Kobe in the face and it led to some choice words from the Lakers legend directed at Howard.

After the game, Kobe was asked whether he likes Howard considering the failed stint they had together on the Lakers and his answer could be 

considered a little patronizing, with Bryant calling him a 'teddy bear' (via Chron.com)

"You can't help but like him, he's a teddy bear," Bryant said. "I really mean that. He is a really nice kid. But you know me. When you're competing and you have a goal in mind, I know one way 

to get there and there's certain times you don't see eye to eye. That wasn't one of those situations. He elbowed me in the face, you know I am going to let him know I don't like that. It's that simple."

While on the face of it, it sounds like a compliment, coupled with the fact that Kobe had called him soft during their altercation, Bryant knew what he was doing when he referred to Dwight as a teddy bear.

The two greats may never have gotten along with one another, but their interactions sure gave NBA fans a lot of entertainment during the early 2010s.