Like it or not, the Black Mamba will always be among the NBA's greats
Not everyone in the NBA can last for 20 years or more, do something great for his team and finally, leave a long-lasting legacy that future generations of NBA players will look to.
Today, the Los Angeles Lakers will formally immortalize the greatness of one of its greatest players to ever step into the court of Staples Center. His name is Kobe Bryant. Of course, you've probably saw many of his videos over YouTube and Facebook. Of course, you've read about his achievements and struggles throughout his 20-year stint with the Purple and Gold. But not everybody understands the reason why he is indeed, one of the greatest players the NBA has ever seen. In fact, some consider him as the closest thing to Michael Jordan.
If anyone questions why the Lakers are retiring not just one but TWO jerseys of Kobe Bryant, below are three of the many reasons:
One of the Most Creative Scorers
Most of you have probably seen his videos scoring notoriously even on seemingly impossible situations. Yep, that's the kind of scorer Kobe Bryant was during his playing years. He currently owns some of the seemingly unbreakable records which include his 81-point game against the Toronto Raptors. That's the second-highest scoring game any NBA player reached- only second to Wilt Chamberlain's 100 points. He's the 3rd all-time leading scorer in the NBA with 33,643 points during the regular season while ranking 4th all-time in playoffs points with 5,640 points. Kobe Bryant is also a 2-time scoring champion who averaged 25 points per game during his career. To finish off his decorated career, he became the oldest player to score 60 points in his final game- leading the Lakers to a come-from-behind win against the Utah Jazz.
More than just a Scorer
One of the most common criticisms that some people, most especially his critics are throwing towards Kobe Bryant is that he was a ball hog- that he didn't pass the ball more often. While his number of assists isn't as impressive as those of Steve Nash's or even John Stockton's, Kobe did more than just scoring. He averaged almost 5 assists per game during the course of his career but he did have 10 assists or more in a notable number of games.
Kobe Bryant has also been hailed as one of the game's best defenders as he was included in the NBA's All-Defensive Team, 12 times.
A Proven Winner
- 5-time NBA champion
- 2-time Finals MVP
- 2008 MVP
- 18-time All-Star
- 4-time All-Star Game MVP
- 15-time All-NBA Team member
And the list goes on.
While some people don't think Kobe Bryant isn't as great as his fans would claim, the statistics don't lie. His achievements don't lie either. Hate him all you want but one thing is certain, folks, Kobe Bryant is indeed, one of the NBA's greatest players.