“Everything negative – pressure, challenges – is all an opportunity for me to rise.” – Kobe Bryant.
It is hard to believe that one of the most celebrated NBA stars in history is no longer with us after a tragic helicopter accident that took his life.
He was one that was inspiring to millions around the world. Further, he was applauded multiple times for staying above the competition and general struggles.
Kobe may have died relatively young, but he certainly lived a full life. The NBA star broke records, gave back to the basketball community, and touched many different people’s lives. Most people, from Alicia Keys to other celebrities, remember his legendary abilities.
The professional basketball player was one that many aspire to be in their professional journeys. Placing numbers on the board like Kobe is one fantastic goal to aspire to in life.
Here are five fascinating aspects about Kobe Bryant.
His First Name
A lot of people don’t know what Kobe’s first name means. Why?
Well, its not a common name. According to the Bryant family, his parents saw the name Kobe Steak on a menu and liked it so much that they decided to name their son Kobe.
In honor of Kobe’s passing, splurge a little, buy some Kobe from your local Japanese market.
Kobe’s Middle Name is Unusual
His middle name is bean after his father, who was also an NBA player, was dubbed Joe “Jelly Bean” Bryant. That goes to show you that the NBA was in his blood and that nature mixed with nurture can go a long way in leading greatness.
Bryant Grew Up in Italy
Even though Kobe Bryant was born in Philadelphia, his family moved to Italy after his father moved there post-retirement. Kobe is fluent in Italian, something that he learned very fast because he wanted to fit in at school in Italy. He is also known to communicate with his team in Italian. He returned to the USA in 1991 when he was still in high school.
Kobe is the First to be Hired Straight from High School
Bryant has always been humble and focused, and he has put a lot into his success. He once said, “The beauty in being blessed with talent is rising above doubters to create a beautiful moment.” He is the first guard who was drafted straight from high school.
Remember that this goes to show us that you can break boundaries by focusing on what you do and being the best at it.
Kobe Started as a Benchwarmer
During the first season, Kobe was not allowed to be part of the action on the court. He was on the bench most of the time. That’s fascinating, right? You would think that they would recognize great talent from the start and prioritize it.
He admitted to this by saying, “’ll do whatever it takes to win games, whether it’s sitting on a bench waving a towel, handing a cup of water to a teammate, or hitting the game-winning shot.”
That goes to show you that it is about improving yourself and being amazing. At the same time, it also about you how you fit into the more extensive system.
Being the Best Does Not Mean You’re Always Affable
In an interview with Klosterman, Kobe notes, “does my nature make me less enjoyable to play with? Of course,” he says. “Of course it does. Is it possible that some top players in the league are intimidated by that? Yes. But do I want to play with those players? Does the Laker organization want those specific players? No. Magic. Jordan. Bird. We all would have been phenomenal teammates. This organization wants players who will carry this franchise to another five or six championships. The player who does that has to be cut from the same cloth. And if they’re not cut from that cloth, they don’t belong here.”
Lastly, you might be wondering, why are we at GeekInsider, profiling Kobe? He was a geek in his own right, he loved basketball, learned all about and became the best at it by devoting himself to the sport. That’s admirable, it takes work, commitment and dedication and there’s a lot to learn from it.