Originally written on Larry Brown Sports  |  Last updated 8/10/12

Kobe Bryant and Stephanie Rice were called out by a few different Australian athletes for allegedly having an inappropriate relationship, leading to Rice addressing the matter. The Australian swimmer says she and Kobe are just friends.

“FYI yes Kobe and I are friends, but no we are not together and never have been,” she wrote in a tweet. “Can’t guys and girls be just friends..? He’s an amazing athlete and I’ve enjoyed getting to know him and many other great athletes in my Olympic journey.”

Rice just gave the story an extra day in the news cycle by responding. Considering that she doesn’t mind being spotted with him in public, or showing off racy bikini pics on Twitter, it’s safe to say she likes the attention. And based on these pictures, it seems like Kobe keeps finding himself in mix-ups with women.

I don’t dispute that they’re just friends and not together, but that doesn’t mean they haven’t hooked up. Only a fool would believe that they haven’t, or that they haven’t gone overboard with their flirting.

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