15 Quick Facts About Late Basketball Legend Kobe Bryant
Born August 23, 1978 Kobe Bean Bryant better known as Kobe Bryant was an American professional basketball player.
The NBA legend died in a tragic helicopter crash yesterday, January 26, 2020, alongside his 13-year-old daughter Gianna as well as eight other persons aboard.
In honour of the basketball star, here are quick facts you should know about him.
- Kobe Bryant was named after Japan’s famous Kobe beef, after his parents saw the name on a menu.
- Bryant opted to forgo college and declared himself eligible for the NBA draft when he graduated from high school. The Charlotte Hornets chose him with the 13th pick of the 1996 draft.
- He was traded to the Lakers and became the second youngest NBA player in history when the 1996–97 season opened.
- He quickly proved his merit with the Lakers and was selected for the NBA All-Star Game in just his second season, becoming the youngest All-Star.
- Bryant was forced to share the role of the Lakers’ star player with his popular and talented teammate Shaquille O’Neal.
- Despite winning five titles during a string of dominance throughout the 2000s, Bryant only garnered one NBA Most Valuable Player award during his career — in 2008.
- In 2002 Kobe Bryant paid $8 million to get out of his endorsement contract with Adidas so that he could sign with Nike.
- In 2003, only 2 years after marrying his wife Vanessa, Kobe was charged with sexual assault against a 19-year-old hotel employee. The case was dismissed but he settled a civil suit out of court.
- Bryant also succeeded on the international stage via Olympic gold medals for basketball in 2008, and in 2012.
- The veteran All-Star surpassed Michael Jordan for third all-time on the NBA scoring list in December 2014,
- In 2015 it was reported that Kobe Bryant earned $49.5 million, between his NBA contract and endorsement deals with various companies.
- In 2015 Bryant wrote the poem “Dear Basketball,” and two years later it served as the basis for a short film of the same name, which he also narrated. The work won an Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film.
- In 2018 Bryant published the book The Mamba Mentality: How I Play, in which he described his approach to basketball; the title reflected a nickname he bestowed upon himself during his playing days, “The Black Mamba.”
- Bryant scored 60 points or more six different times throughout his career – including the unbelievable showing in his final NBA game.
- Kobe Bryant earned over $328 million from his NBA contracts during his career. He is believed to have made over $680 million in total during his career from his NBA salary and endorsements.