The death of Kobe Bryant took many people by surprise, both his family and his fans. Though he passed on a bit early in his career compared to other legends, here are some facts about his life that are worth noticing.
Kobe got his name from a Japanese type of steak after his parents read it on a menu. His father, Joe Bryant, was also a professional basketball player, though he played for an Italian team.
When Kobe joined the NBA, he was the youngest player during the 1996 season. He was only 18 years and two months old, fresh out of high school. He was also the youngest starter at 19 in the first All-Star game he played.
During his lifetime, Kobe won the Olympic gold medal for the men’s basketball twice, and he was the fourth scorer in the NBA at the time of his death. On January 22 of 2006, Kobe scored 81 pointers for the Lakers, enabling them to beat Toronto. This is the highest score ever recorded in one game by one player other than the 100-point score by Wilt Chamberlain.
It was not until 2008 that Kobe Bryant was recorded as the most valuable player in the NBA. This was after more than eight years of dominance. In December 2014, Kobe surpassed Michael Jordan’s scoring record and became the third-best scorer of all time in the NBA.
The legendary player scored over 60 points in six different games including the last NBA game before his death.
Kobe wrote the ‘Dear Basketball’ poem, which was later used as the foundation of a short film that Kobe narrated. The film then won an Academy Award as the Best Animated Short Film. Kobe also became an author when he published the book, ‘The Mamba Mentality’ in 2018.