Bryant played 80 games for the first time in his career in 2001-02. Bryant announced his retirement from the squad after winning another gold medal. He and his two brothers grew up in Crenshaw, a South Los Angeles area centered on Crenshaw Boulevard and Slauson Avenue. His mother died when he was 10 years old; his father had multiple sclerosis.
Kobe's family moved to Florence Acres, a public housing project near Crenshaw High School. His older brother Ronald "Reggie" III was already playing basketball at Crenshaw. When Reggie left to play college ball at Louisville, younger brother Kobe decided to follow him. He quickly made an impact by scoring 15 points in one game during his freshman season. The following year, he led the team in scoring with 17.5 points per game.
After one season at Louisville, where he lost weight and improved his shooting percentage, Kobe entered his name into the 1996 NBA draft. Several teams were interested in drafting him, but he chose to return to school instead. He finished his college career as one of only four players in NCAA history to score 2,000 points and grab 1,000 rebounds (the others are David Robinson, Bill Walton, and Shaquille O'Neal).
Kobe was the third player taken in the 1997 draft, going number two to the Charlotte Hornets.
Bryant appeared in 71 games in his first season, despite being only 18 years old. Furthermore, he scored 7.6 points per game in less than 16 minutes of action. Allen Iverson, the first overall choice in the 1996 NBA Draft, was named Rookie of the Year that year, although Bryant was not considered. He finished with 23 victories and 6 losses.
Yes, Kobe won ROY. He just didn't get any votes from the coaches or media members that choose the award winner. In fact, nobody on the Lakers took home any awards that season. The only award that Kobe has ever won is the NBA's Most Valuable Player Award, which he also may not have been eligible for since he had only played one full season in the league at the time. However, he still managed to win it anyway.
Lakers fans might be tempted to give Bryant the award every year from then on, but he'll never win it again. In 2004-05, Shaquille O'Neal led the Lakers to their first championship in team history. Although he was voted MVP by the players, he lost to Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat.
In 2005-06, Bryant helped the Lakers win their second consecutive title. He averaged 27.4 points, 5.8 rebounds, and 1.8 assists during the playoffs that season.
Bryant did not appear on the bench again throughout the game. Bryant, though, broke that pattern on Tuesday night when he strolled out of the tunnel and onto the Los Angeles Lakers' bench against the Dallas Mavericks. The 37-year-old, however, did not immediately locate an open seat. He walked to the end of the bench before finding one.
Bryant has been working out with his team in preparation for their playoff run this year. He had surgery on his ankle last January and hasn't played since. According to ESPN's Chris Broussard, who reported from Los Angeles on Wednesday morning, Bryant is expected to be ready for the start of the season next month. However, it remains to be seen whether or not he'll be able to play at a high level given his age and the fact that he didn't participate in any preseason games.
Bryant became the youngest player in NBA history to win three titles at the age of 23. Bryant's performance in the fourth quarter of games, particularly in the final two rounds of the playoffs, was noticeable and appreciated. Bryant's status as a "clutch player" was entrenched as a result of this.
He first won his title with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2000 at the age of 21 years and 271 days. He went on to win more championships with the Lakers (six) and the Boston Celtics (two).
Kobe Bryant played his last game for the Los Angeles Lakers on June 10, 2016. He finished his career with Mamba Day ceremonies before becoming one of five players (along with Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Larry Bird, and Kevin Durant) named to the NBA's All-Time Team. He also holds many records including most points by a player who has not won a championship.
After graduating from high school at the age of 17, Bryant spent four seasons at Syracuse University. As a freshman, he led the Orangemen to the 1998 National Championship game where they lost to Duke University. After his first season, he declared for the NBA draft.
While many people expected him to be picked near the top of the first round, he was actually drafted seventh overall by the Charlotte Hornets.
Bryant wanted to win in basketball and in life, and he accomplished so. He was hell-bent on being the greatest basketball player of all time. His work ethic was ridiculous, and he would spend time training without a basketball on the floor. That's not something you see very often. He had many offers from other sports to switch over to them, but he never did. He felt playing basketball was too great an opportunity to pass up.
Bryant's mother died when he was only 10 years old, and his father died when he was 21 years old. He didn't have much growing up, but that only made him work harder to prove himself. When it came to basketball, he wasn't going to let anything or anyone stop him from reaching his dreams.
In 2004, Bryant became the youngest ever MVP award winner when he was just 24 years old. The next year, he won his first championship with the Los Angeles Lakers. In 2007, he led the Lakers to their second straight title; this time he was even more successful than before, winning his third championship. In 2009, Bryant returned to school to finish his degree in education. He finished with 3 championships, 10 NBA awards, and is still going strong after coming back from an injury that ended his season.
Even though he came from a rich family, Bryant chose to help others who weren't as lucky as him to get a chance to go to college.