On April 13th, 2016, Kobe Bryant played his final game in the N.B.A. against the Utah Jazz doing what no player of the past to take 50 shots in one game. The night ended and his entire career by scoring a career-high 60 points game, which was the sixth game of his career. Read some amazing Facts About Kobe Bryant!
Bryant announced his retirement plans in November. 29, 2015, in an extended poem posted on the website of the Players’ Tribune that was titled “Dear Basketball.” “This season is all I have left to give,” Bryant wrote. “My heart can take the pounding / My mind can handle the grind /, But my body knows it’s time to say goodbye.”
The tragic death of Bryant 5 years after, aged 41, following the crash of a helicopter on January 26th. 26 2020 shocked fans around the world and cut short an exciting new chapter of Bryant’s career.
Here are 24 interesting facts you may not have heard about the Lakers legendary number 24…
More than Jordan
For instance, many people are aware that Kobe Bryant is one of the top scorers ever. Did you know that he’s actually had greater points in a single season than Michael Jordan?
Named after a steak
His father named him Kobe after the high-end and famous Japanese cuts of meat known as Kobe meat, following being able to see it on menus.
A Japanese city sued a whole city.
It turns out that Kobe did not like the idea of sharing his name with a slice of tender, fat beef. Therefore, in 2010 Kobe filed a lawsuit against his Japanese town of Kobe for the right to change the name of their flagship product.
When asked about the matter, his lawyer Jeff Rundvlees, told L.A. Weekly, “While we are aware the city of Kobe has been around longer than my client, Mr. Bryant has clearly become more famous and influential. I mean, just type ‘Kobe’ into Google and tell me what comes up first. If Gatorade had a flavor named Kobe and wasn’t paying him for it, we’d be using them too.”
A Laker through and through
Kobe Bryant played all 20 years with the Los Angeles Lakers, winning five championships. Kobe Bryant became the very first N.B.A. player to have 20 seasons on the same team.
Almost a Hornet
Kobe was initially selected by Kobe was originally drafted to Charlotte Hornets. Then, in July of 1996, only two weeks after the team selected Kobe as the 13th selection in the initial round of the N.B.A. draft, Charlotte traded Kobe to the Lakers in exchange for Vlade Divac.
It’s almost like a hip-hop star.
In January 2000, Kobe Bryant released a single collaborating with Sony Entertainment, called “K.O.B.E.” The track featured him rapping about the passion for “basketball, beats and broads” and supermodel Tyra Banks singing the song.
There were initial plans for an entire album called “Visions,” which would be released later in the spring. However, when the first single hit the ground like a tonne of bricks, Sony pulled its N.B.A. star.
Fluent in Italian
After living in Italy for a few years in his early childhood, Kobe became fluent in Italian.
The next greatest soccer player?
Growing up as a child living in Italy, Kobe grew to appreciate the sport of soccer and the culture associated with it. He was a regular participant in match-ups at the park, initially as a goalie then midfielder.
When the Chicago Tribune asked him what would have happened if the family hadn’t moved back to the United States, Kobe responded, “I would have kept playing, that’s for sure. I loved basketball so much, but I also wanted to play for AC Milan.” He added, “If myself, Tracy McGrady, and LeBron James had a soccer ball at our feet instead of a basketball at two years old, with our size, it could have been something.”
Five golden rings
Kobe Bryant has won five N.B.A. titles. Other LA Lakers with that many rings are Derek Fisher, Michael Cooper, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Magic Johnson.
What’s the deal with five men in a team?
At 17 years old, Kobe attended his prom at high school with Brandy.
On January 22nd and January 22nd of 2006, Kobe scored 81 points in one game with Toronto Raptors. Toronto Raptors.
The only player who achieved more points than this in one contest was Wilt Chamberlain, who scored 100 points in the Philadelphia Warriors in 1962.
There isn’t any love in Philly.
Kobe is a native of Philadelphia and attended High School in the Philadelphia area, but the fans in the area were quick to boo the player. The majority of the hometown animosity stems from Kobe’s incident in 2001 when he informed journalists that Lakers were heading to Philly to rip the hearts of the 76ers.
The big man at the campus
Kobe is the first player to be selected into the N.B.A. right out of high school.
As of 1997, Kobe Bryant became the youngest athlete to be the winner of the N.B.A. Slam Dunk Contest.
The longest playing guard you’ve ever seen
Kobe was not only the first player to be a part of the same team over 20 years. Kobe is one of the few guards to have played 20 seasons in a row, all the time.
It is a family affair.
Kobe’s father, Joe “Jellybean” Bryant, was also an N.B.A. professional. He was with the N.B.A. for eight years, playing with the 76ers and with the Clippers along with the Rockets before moving towards Europe, after which he played seven seasons with the Italian leagues.
Kobe Bean Bryant
The middle name of Kobe is Bean, an homage to his father’s nickname for athletics.
Kobe played in an appearance in the N.B.A. All-Star Game a staggering 18 times. The only person in history with more selections is Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, a player in 19.
Kobe Bryant retired as the all-time leading scoring Laker and was also the fourth-highest scorer in N.B.A. history with 33,643 total points over his career.
Many missed opportunities
It takes many shots to fill most of them in, however. Kobe Bryant will also be remembered as the N.B.A.’s greatest player for missed shots.
Kobe is the happy owner of gold and silver medals from his team for the U.S. national team at the 2008 and 2012 Summer Olympics.
A defensive force
Kobe was selected on Kobe’s N.B.A. All-Defensive Team 12 times, which is second only to Tim Duncan’s record of 15.
All-NBA, First-Team, and All-NBA team selections
Kobe Bryant is tied with Michael Jordan, Kevin Garnett, and Gary Payton for the most first-team choices ever. Each of them has nine selections.
Also, he’s tied with Karl Malone for the most ever All-NBA selections, with 11.
A life of success
When Kobe was retired after the 2015 season, Kobe had been playing in the N.B.A. for more than half of his life.