The Legend: Kobe Bryant

By: Jaylen Ward

Today, the basketball world was in deep grief. This was not only because this past year 2020 has allowed many people to face difficult times, but because of the death of a world-wide icon who is named Kobe Bean Bryant. 

Kobe Bryant was a phenomenal basketball player who people of my generation or even another’s considered Kobe to be the greatest basketball player of all time. Kobe entered the National Basketball Association at 17 years old as a Los Angeles Laker.

Kobe played for 20 years in the National Basketball Association all with the Los Angeles Lakers. The numbers Kobe wore on his jersey were number 8 and number 24. Kobe switched his number after 10 years. Kobe jokingly favors 8 over 24 because of his ability to grow hair but actually favors 24 over 8 because of the challenges he had to face while having that number.

The number 8 was on his jersey for 10 years as he achieved 3 championships. He also achieved to grab 2 more championships while wearing 24. Sunday, January 26th, 2020, the world was deeply saddened by the death of 9 lives. Kobe Bryant, Gigi Bryant, John Altobelli, Keri Altobelli, Alyssa Altobelli, Christina Mauser, Sarah Chester, Payton Chester, and Ara Zobayan. All of these lives were a part of someone’s family and played a role in the world.

Photo by: Jude Beck

“Honestly, I was shocked because it was so unexpected. Kobe was one of my basketball idols and it still doesn’t feel real after a year,” said Don Tyrell, a junior on the Men’s basketball team here at William Peace.

Today, January 26th, 2021, that feeling hit the world all over again just like the initial incident. Gigi Bryant was also a part of the basketball world, the 13-year-old was a rising youth star whose talents were noticed by the University of Uconn and other colleges.

So why was the basketball world feeling this way, well it was because of Kobe. Kobe gave the sport of basketball his all. The saying of “blood, sweat, and tears” was what Kobe was definitely about. Example of “blood” was when Kobe got his finger dislocated in a game, and literally seconds after Kobe got it popped back in and played the rest of the game as if he had never got hurt in the first place. “Sweat” was when Kobe held a workout from 4:15 a.m till 11 a.m. not leaving the gym until he made 800 shots. “Tears” is when Kobe cried after having a significant injury tearing his achilles but still found a way to overcome this injury.

Kobe hated to lose and his passion gravitated towards the fans which is one of the reasons he is truly looked at as an icon. 

“Losing an NBA legend like Kobe Bryant startled me,” said Jalen Owens, a sophomore on the Men’s basketball team here at WPU.

So I want to give my condolences out to the families that lost their loved ones and also the basketball community to speak on how these deaths are forgotten and the impact you left was imprinted.