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This is particularly hard for me. It’s hard to explain. I was never a HUGE Bryant fan, but seemed so real and genuine, the fact that it was so tragic and sudden, with daughter and other passengers, etc. this is just HORRIFIC news. 😢😢😢

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This one hit has me harder than any celebrity death I can think of for some reason... Just doesn’t seem real.  The first time I ever really paid close attention to the NBA was the 2010 Finals when Kobe got his last ring over the Celtics.  He was so young and still had such a prominent role in the league coming off his retirement just a few years back... Really shocking.  You had to respect him as a relentless competitor, and it seemed like he was a family man too.  This clip of him with his daughter was just making the rounds on social media recently... RIP.

 

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Just now, FW_Hoosier said:

This one hit has me harder than any celebrity death I can think of for some reason... Just doesn’t seem real.  The first time I ever really paid close attention to the NBA was the 2010 Finals when Kobe got his last ring over the Celtics.  He was so young and still had such a prominent role in the league coming off his retirement just a few years back... Really shocking.  You had to respect him as a relentless competitor, and it seemed like he was a family man too.  This clip of him with his daughter was just making the rounds on social media recently... RIP.

 

Remember the 2000 finals and him hitting a key shot to beat the Pacers in game 4 making it a 3-1 Lakers advantage.

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I'm not going to pretend I didn't have a few problems with Kobe but hearing how CNN lead with a negative story when reporting his death is just disgusting.  Glad this forum follows the old mantra of saying nothing if you can't say anything good here.  Feel very bad for his wife and kids.

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This one hit our family pretty hard. Kobe and Jeter are my oldest sons favorite athletes. We were able to go to Kobes last game against the Pacers. We have about a dozen Kobe jerseys in our house.  Ayden will be wearing a Kobe All Star jersey today.  Ayden my sensitive little boy took it really hard. RIP Mamba and Gigi, prayers for his family and for family of all passengers.  

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7 hours ago, FKIM01 said:

I'm not going to pretend I didn't have a few problems with Kobe but hearing how CNN lead with a negative story when reporting his death is just disgusting.

Glass houses. 

Kobe was human, like we all are.  And like anyone else, he had his good points and bad points.  Overall, I think he did more good for this world than not. 

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Being a lifelong fan of the team(GO LAKERS , EFF THE CELTICS 4-LIFE!!!!!!) ,  seeing this made me sick :(  Literally as hurt now , as I recall being as a kid waking up to Magic(my fav player + Laker of all time)  retiring with HIV .  Cried over Kobe's passing yesterday the same way as well,.. Plenty of emotions flowing,.Still in shock and disbelief that this actually happened. Not sure what specifically to say to do justice to my feelings about Kobe as someone I cheered for night in night out(including while being quite  frustrated with him off and on at times) ,  nor this tragedy still.

I am appreciative to have saw his growth from day 1 to his last days with the team. I'm glad I eventually warmed up and gave him a fair look after the way my opinions of him started off.  The man helped bring some damn good times to my young adult hood days!!!  It came a long way over a long time and made the sum of Bryant's career mean a  lot to me. I've sill never felt this way(of such a profound transition from outright disliking an individual player to profuse appreciation)  about another sports superstar ever to the same extent. Not even with Ron Artest but Bryant still set himself apart clearly due to the timespan following him being unmatched by anyone I've ever watched in the NBA before. .

 20 seasons, hundreds of nights, and roughly thousands of hours of rooting for Kobe led LAL teams makes it surreal that he was taken in mere moments .  I still looked(same as with Magic Johnson)  for Bryant in their box  scores for weeks in the season following his retirement-  hoping that I would come back to a missed announcement  that Kobe had a change of heart to come back for another run.   I came full circle on my appreciation for him well before his career ended due to his loyalty to the Lakers. That sunk in  right around the time they beat Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett led Boston actually.  Even despite being Pro-Shaq in their feud , for obvious reasons I never wished anything but the best for his individual games and career.Never wavered on that despite my happiness and irritation staying in near equal balance until it tipped with that last title.

Kobe also helped keep the Lakers visibly synonymous with being elite, even when titles or .500 records weren't at stake and people(some fellow Laker fans included)  trashed the team, and that gets lost often in conversations - most purely basketball discussions of Kobe center around Bryant's accomplishments from when they were contending and debating his place among Jordan LeBron and other all time greats.

Time that added up and accomplishments that added up gradually won me over. but his loyalty to the Lakers is what stood out most in the end to go with the rings, MVP + All Star selections. and OIympic Gold. .A lot of Laker fans especially the old school "Showtime Era" folks ,likely can relate in some way - or at least not far from it - having also followed as those  separate Laker Eras of greatness rose and fell... Folks appreciate dedication, particularly as fans, no matter what because at the end of the day it is admirable. Staying for the ups and downs instead of going when the going gets tough demonstrates what nice words in interviews by revolving door Free Agent players just can't. nor ever did.. That is how I'll remember Kobe. Life is too fragile to take it for granted.

Hurts :( 

 

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This one has hit me hard as well. As a Celtic, I obviously hate the Lakers and always rooted against Kobe. I couldn't stand him for probably his first 16 years or so he was in the league. But, as he got later in his career, the last couple years when you knew he wasn't winning a title anymore, but he became a mentor to younger players and became much more reflective about the game, his career and life in general, I began to become a real fan. 

Then, in his post-playing career, I came to love him. As a father of two daughters (and a son) and someone that coaches youth basketball, the way he spoke about parenting, his perspective on parenting and especially parenting daughters, his influence on women's basketball which was really just beginning, and the way he spoke about life and perspective, I just became a huge, huge fan. As amazing as he was as a basketball player, I truly believe his greatest impact was going to be in his second life after basketball. 

Just last week I saw a video where he was talking about how he coaches his daughter's team. He mentioned the biggest thing he does is ask the girls questions. Let them tell him what their seeing out there. It allows him to understand the "why" of what they're doing and then better provide what they need to improve. It also helps them learn better. I immediately began implementing that thought with my team. 

His impact is undeniable. As mentioned, we're Celtics in my house. We hate the Lakers. My oldest daughter has been glued to the coverage and talking to us about Kobe's daughter and what she could have accomplished. My son, again a die-hard Celtics fan, burst into tears and immediately went to our basement where I could hear him playing NBA2K. He was playing it as the Lakers all-time team and using Kobe. A little later he went to the driveway and was pretending he was Kobe Bryant hitting shots to win the championship. That's a 9 year old diehard Celtics fan. 

I was lucky enough to meet Kobe once. I can't say it was some memorable experience. I was working for the Celtics and the Lakers were in town. Typically only one PR rep travels for a team and there is a lot to do. SI was doing to feature on Shaq and Kobe and needed to do a pre-game photo shoot with them. The Lakers PR guy, being extremely busy, asked me to coordinate getting a room for the shoot and to come to the Lakers locker room to escort Shaq & Kobe to the photoshoot, make sure SI got what they needed, and then bring them both back to the locker room. 

Other than being in awe of both of them, especially Shaq's sheer size, nothing really memorable happened, but absolutely glad I got that experience and definitely one of the highlights of 5 years working for the Celtics.

Edited by BGleas
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