I met Kobe after a Lakers/Warriors game back in 2004, and he dropped 35 with Shaq's 31. Caught him just outside of the locker rooms because I knew someone from security working there, and Kobe actually stopped and spoke with me for 2-3 minutes (felt like 30 seconds) about when I started watching the Lakers, if I played ball, etc. Then, he signed a picture for me. Incredible moment I'll never forget.
Since I started playing, I've patterned my entire game after his and MJ's. Jordan was the first player I mimicked, back in the early 90's, and then Kobe came along. Once he became more of a voice on and off the court, he turned into a role model for me, in a few ways...and over the last two years, since the birth of my daughter, I've watched Kobe treat his kids so well and it pushes me to be a great dad as long as I'm there for her.
RIP Kobe Bryant, Gigi, and the seven other passengers. Wish it weren't true.
I was on vacation, Vegas/California. Arrived in Cali on saturday, I watched the Lakers game to see Lebron pass Kobe. Last thing I ever expected was to hear that Kobe had died, I got a bunch of texts about it and I was shocked. Did not expect to go to LA and seeing what it looks like to have a city lose their Icon. Would be like if Big Papi was in fact murdered or if something tragic happened to Brady. LA just totally changed after what happened and I'm sure it is still mourning and will be mourning for a while.
I’m not a basketball fan, but knew the name Kobe Bryant and have to say when I saw the news I was so shocked ?
As a mother, my heart is absolutely broken for Vanessa and their 3 daughters, I can’t even imagine what they and the family/friends of the 7 others that lost their lives are going through ?
Kobe & Gianna Bryant
Sarah & Payton Chester
John, Keri & Alyssa Altobelli
I grew up worshiping Jordan so Kobe wasn't really "my guy". In fact there were times where I resented Kobe because of how often the media tried to compare the two. It seemed like after every great moment the "Is he better than Jordan" debate began to rear it's head.
The last 20 years provided us with a slew of amazing perimeter players but none of them possessed the same drive and the same leadership... and the ones that did couldn't match his talent. He is hands down the closest thing to MJ that we've seen. At the very least he has to be in the top 10 all time convo... arguably top 5. Nobody that I've watched since MJ has made me say "WOW" more times than Kobe.
When I heard the news I couldn't believe it. I just began to shake. Now that some time has passed and the reality has really set in I've come to grips with it... but that first day... man. Just didn't feel real. Felt like he was too indestructible to die.
Saddest, darkest day in sports history that I've been alive to witness. R.I.P. Kobe and Gianna.