Kobe Bryant enthralled the NBA community throughout his entire 20-year career. Bryant had to work hard to become a superstar and even harder to maintain his position at the top because he entered the game as an untried, raw teenager.
Bryant found a way to play even when he was wounded or injured, and it was because of his strong work ethic and perseverance that his career became such a huge success.
Tyronn Lue on Kobe Bryant
Tyronn Lue, the Clippers coach and former teammate of Kobe Bryant at the outset of his career, reflected on Bryant and his many experiences with him while talking about one of his favorite Kobe moments and the attitude he embodied every single day.
“One story is when he broke his hand and I had micro fracture surgery. I was out for the whole season and he was out for a while. I got better and we would play 1 on 1 full court and my cousin is like why can’t you beat this guy 1 on 1. A year later my cousin says I can see why you couldn’t beat him. He really thought be about hard work and dedication, and what it takes to be a professional. So, learning that a young age, he was 17. He came with his own routine that followed every single day. He was special. So, definitely truly missed,” he said.
Ex-Lakers Ty Lue shared a story about @kobebryant when he was out & needed surgery, and Bryant was out too.
“We would play 1 on 1 full court & my cousin is like why can’t u beat this guy 1 on 1. A yr later my cousin says I can see why you couldn’t beat him.”
— Landon Buford (@LandonBuford) January 23, 2023
Numerous Kobe stories exist, and the majority of them have a common theme. Bryant never wavered in his ambition to win because he was a true student of the game and had an obsession with being the best. This left a lasting impression on everyone who witnessed it.
Bryant’s high school teacher on her favorite Kobe story
The Mamba’s response after his former high school instructor questioned him in the Finals was described in another story highlighting Kobe’s unmatched competitive spirit.
“We were gathering in this little anteroom. And we were sitting quietly in the room, and I just brought this article up, and he said, “Yeah, well, you remember? Remember when you called me during the Finals?” And I said, “Yes, but the article says we ‘talked.’ Conversation implies that one person speaks and the other person responds.” And he [Kobe] laughs, and he says, “Well, I’ll tell you: I saved that message and I played it over and over and over again as I was getting ready for the rest of the games,” he said.
These kinds of tales are now very typical among NBA fans. Those who were acquainted with Kobe and had the opportunity to interact with him meaningfully could attest to his authenticity. Tyronn Lue experienced Kobe briefly before the world realized how unique he truly was. He somehow maintained the same level of tenacity throughout his time with the Lakers, even back then.