24/8 (RIP Kobe)

I doubt my brother remembers, but I do. We played in the street. We yelled “car!” and ran to the sidewalk. We waited eagerly for the car to pass. We would run back out into the street, and granny style I would heave the slightly deflated spalding rock in the air with all of the strength in me, and yell “Kobe!” Six times out of ten I missed, and my brother would say “you can’t yell Kobe if you’re going to shoot granny.” I teared up in my black throw back #8 Lakers jersey, I wanted to yell Kobe. So I worked, and I shot, and I practiced, and I hoped for the day I was strong enough to shoot over-hand and yell that name. That was my first taste of Mamba Mentality.

Beyond basketball, Kobe was an icon. He was an Oscar winner, he was a role model, he was someone that made the impossiblity of goals seem all the more possible with just  that much more work. I’m at a loss for words. Kobe was someone that you thought you’d have the privlage of watching age gracefully. He was an NBA legend, that did not skip a beat as a role model post retirement.

We used to clown Kobe. He was a jerk on the court, he does not pass ball, he was overzealous in his depictions of work ethic. Frankly however, I feel ashamed, I feel sorry that I sit here and say; he came off as a jerk on the court because he wasn’t going to let anyone stop him from being the best. He did not pass the ball because he was going to take his success into his own hands, he did not want to leave it up to others, and he was overzealous in his depictions of work ethic because through Kobe I have learned that things do not happen magically, you have to work toward success.

This is the only thing I thought as I cried and hoped the news was false.

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I’ll call it 24/8

I watched him score 81 in ’06.

Passed MJ in 2014

Does anyone else remember when he just would not stop dropping 50 points?

My brothers told stories of his championship runs

I laughed as he relentlessly dominated all-star games

Reluctantly watching him drop 61 at MSG in ’09

Did he really shoot free throws on a torn achilles???

Kobe’s last game was a perpetual moment in time.

Thank you Kobe Bryant for making sure I wouldn’t shoot granny style anymore.

 

Prayers to all nine people that perished today, RIP Kobe and RIP GiGi. Hug someone today.

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