The Legacy of Kobe
Kobe, 41, his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others were tragically lost in an accident on January 26, 2020.
When I first heard the news, it didn’t seem real to me. This eerie report shocked the world and shattered hearts globally. Kobe affected the lives of people all around the world from athletes, to celebrities, to fans, and normal ordinary people.
Whether you’re a basketball fan or not, this one hurts.
I’m writing this in honor of Kobe and want to take you through some of the great accolades he’s accomplished, and why he’ll be missed dearly.
Kobe’s an icon. He’s one of the GREATEST basketball players of all time. No one can argue that. He’s done things in this game no one’s done.
Tenacious, inspirational, driven. These are just a few words to describe his temperament.
He was much more than a basketball player though. He was a father, a husband, a public figure, and a brother to many.
Kobe Bryant was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on August 28, 1978. His dad was a former professional basketball player, and Kobe followed his footsteps.
Once his dad retired from the NBA, he went on to play in Italy which is where Kobe spent part of his childhood. The family then returned to Philadelphia where Kobe brought his high school basketball team a state championship.
In 1996, Kobe was drafted by the Charlotte Hornets before being traded to the Los Angeles Lakers. He’s one of the few basketball players that was drafted right out of high school.
Right from the start, Kobe started breaking records. He was the youngest player to ever start in an NBA game at the time. Also, he’s the oldest player to score over 60 points in a game and has scored the most points in a single game in the modern era (second all-time).
81 points in a single game. You read that right. He was remarkable.
In his 20-year career, he reached third on the all-time scoring list until LeBron James surpassed him recently.
Below you will find some highlights that just scratch the surface of what he’s done for the game.
- 5-time champion
- 15 All-Star game appearances
- 4 All-Star game MVP awards
- 2 MVP Finals awards
- 1 regular-season MVP award
- 2 Olympic gold medals
Only a handful of people have had the honor of winning an NBA championship. But 5!?!? Now, that’s next level. And he did this all from the same team, the Los Angeles Lakers.
He’s the greatest Laker of all time.
Kobe was about as cold as it gets when it comes to high-pressure situations. For him, he embraced pressure. And when he missed a shot, it didn’t affect him. He kept shooting. His self-confidence was awe-inspiring.
He had ice in his veins. When the clock was ticking, and it came down to the final shot, he knew it was time for lights out. And his teammates knew too. Everyone trusted him with the ball.
Kobe’s Work Ethic
Besides all the accolades he’s accomplished, his work ethic and off the court persona is what truly separates him.
Kobe was intelligent. He could speak multiple languages and was constantly learning. He was fluent in Italian and Spanish.
Kobe worked hard. And I mean HARD. Just to give you a brink of his work ethic, during the 2008 Olympics, the whole team had just come down for breakfast for the start of the training camp, but Kobe came in with ice on his knees. Dwayne Wade stated “Everybody else just woke up. We’re all yawning, and he’s already three hours and a full workout into his day.”
“Those times when you get up early… those times when you stay up late… when you’re too tired… you don’t want to push yourself, but you do it anyway.”
“That is actually the dream.”
– Kobe Bryant
The Mamba Mentality.
Unfortunately, the world will never be able to see the continuous great work he was in the making of.
After basketball, he put much of his attention on his daughter, Gianna’s basketball career and as a writer and producer.
He praised his daughter’s potential as a basketball player.
On top of everything else he’s accomplished, he was the first African American to win an Oscar for Best Animated Short.
He inspires others that whatever you want, whatever you put your mind to, you can have it. You just need to have the mamba mentality.
“The most important thing is to try and inspire people so that they can be great in whatever they want to do.”
– Kobe Bryant
The “Black Mamba.” Not everyone gets to carry around a trademark name like this. Few remember them.
But Kobe Bryant left a legacy behind that will last perpetually, and he’ll live on in other’s hearts all across the world forever.
Many will remember him for his competitive nature and basketball performances, but he was much more than that.
Rest in peace, Kobe.
Header image courtesy of Instagram