The Legacy of Kobe Bryant
End of the Road
I came across this Kobe Bryant mini movie, and I was caught reminiscing on the greatness of Kobe Bryant. With Kobe Bryant entering his 17th NBA season, in which he will be 34 years of age, it is safe assume that the end of the road may be near for the All-Star guard. Especially, with youth movement that is occurring in the NBA with rise of young superstars such as Kevin Durant, Derrick Rose, Russell Westbrook, Rajon Rondo, Blake Griffin, etc. In addition to that, current NBA superstars such as LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Carmelo Anthony, Deron Williams, Chris Paul, and Dwight Howard are entering the prime of their careers.
Building the Legacy
Kobe Bryant has spent 16th years with the Los Angeles Lakers, a team that initially didn’t even draft him, after a draft day trade that send C Vlade Divac to the New Orleans Hornets for the draft rights for Kobe Bryant to them. The Lakers were the definitely the winners in this deal. Vlade Divac averaged 11.5 points and 8.55 rebounds in two years that he was with the Charlotte Hornets organization, while Kobe Bryant has averaged 25.4 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 4.7 assists in 16 years thus far with the Los Angeles Lakers organization. And to make matters worse, Vlade Divac never turned out to be the dominant big man that the Hornets were desperately missing since parting ways with Alonzo Mourning.
On the other hand, Kobe Bryant has accumulated several awards; 5-time NBA Champion, 13-time NBA All-Star(received All-Star MVP honors 4 times), 12-time All-Defensive team member, Olympic Gold medalist in 2008, and he is also the all-time leading scorer for the Los Angeles Lakers. Kobe Bryant became known as one of the NBA’s most devastating scorers after leading the league in scoring twice and by being the only player to come close to the highest single game scoring record of 100 points set by Wilt Chamberlain in 1962 when he dropped 81 points against the Toronto Raptors in 2006. Even though, Kobe Bryant has accomplished so much in the NBA he is still attempting to add to his legacy by enlisting the help of Steve Nash to assist in the goal of winning his sixth NBA championship, which would tie him with Michael Jordan.
Emerging From the Shadows
Even though, Kobe Bryant has had a successful basketball career it did not come without its fair share of adversity and turmoil. Kobe Bryant has fought to gain the recognition that would move him from behind the shadows of other great players to the top of NBA supremacy; I think he has a good shot of achieving the same type of respect that is associated with Michael Jordan when his name is mentioned in basketball conversations. In my opinion, Kobe Bryant has already played his way from under Shaquille O’Neal’s shadow. Since, he has become the Los Angeles Lakers all-time scoring leader, a list on which O’Neal is currently seventh all-time, and the fact that he has 5 NBA Championships opposed to Shaq’s 4 NBA Championships. Now only one man stands in the way of Kobe possibly being recognized as the best basketball player ever; Michael Jordan. Over the course of his career, Kobe Bryant has drawn numerous comparisons to Michael Jordan due to similar play-styles and the ability to completely take over a game in late game situations. I believe Kobe Bryant has a chance to become regarded as one of the best NBA players ever once his career is over.