‘Gonna Kick Your A–’: Former NBA Champion Shares an Interesting Tale to Prove Kobe Bryant Had an Iron Will

Published 04/28/2021, 1:00 PM EDT
LOS ANGELES, CA – JANUARY 15: (L-R) Kobe Bryant #24 and Lamar Odom #7 of the Los Angeles Lakers share a laugh on the bench during the game against the Los Angeles Clippers on January 15, 2010 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. The Lakers won 126-86. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)


Kobe Bryant handpicked the name Mamba for himself and later justified it with a kingly career. He was a walking hazard symbol for his rivals and all that resulted from his will to do whatever it took. No wonder the Lakers formed a dynasty under him and regained their position several times following setbacks.

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A man that spent seven years of the twenty years that KB gave to the Lake show alongside him, Lamar Odom is a vocal admirer of Mamba. He saw all kinds of days with the world-class athlete and closely noted how the legend responded to different situations.

Lamar Odom has a rarely known Kobe Bryant tale

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In a recent interview, the 41-YO retired NBA player first explained what differentiated Kobe Bryant from others. He proudly shared, “His will. His ability to block everything out and focus on what’s in front of him. Incredible will to do that.” 

Lakers’ Kobe Bryant waves to the crowd after passing Michael Jordan on the all-time scoring list. December 14, 2014, at Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)

The Candy Man shared a tale that further gave a tiny demonstration of KB’s focus. Back in the days, the Black Mamba had done an all-white photoshoot for the LA Times. That shoot had become the talk of the town for being too weird and off-fashion. In fact, it was meme material for many, and that’s what the Utah audience tried to vainly use against Kobe. 

The two-time NBA Champion narrated, “I’ll give you a prime example of that… He did that all-white photoshoot, which a lot of people were questioning, why the f— did you do this?… So we were in Utah, you know how those fans can be ruthless. Every fan in the stand had a picture of that all-white photo shoot… He still was able to be like, ‘all right, y’all gonna get on me? I’m gonna still go ahead and kick your a**.’ No other player can do that.”

Read also – When and Why Did Kobe Bryant win an Oscar?

The Mamba’s Lakers teammate had yet another point to make

Today, many analysts criticize LeBron James for not being as good a clutch player as some of the other greats. Nobody can make the same remark against Kobe Bryant and get away with it without facing loads of heat. 

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As the 6’10” Package said, “You can ask the NBA greats about how many game-winners they won that they hit. You’ll probably get like five, or six… Kobe Bryant did nine in one season, nine!… He was trying to be the best in every practice too.”

The five-time NBA Champion was known for making those unassisted game-winners and hence goes down as one of the most clutch players. Overall, he dropped 27 game-winners for the team and that spoke of the confidence he carried in his leadership and training. One can’t forget Kobe’s buzzer-beater over the Phoenix Suns in the 2006 WC R1 Game 4.

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That was one incredible night that more or less summed up Kobe’s courage and focus. Which one of his game-winning shots is your favorite? 

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Sourabh Singh

1134 articles

Sourabh Singh is an NBA sports analyst for EssentiallySports, who has been working with the site since May 2020. Prior to this, he functioned as Managing Editor at WittyFeed, followed by a stint at Decathlon. The Sports Management graduate leads an active lifestyle, veering to the mountains for off-trail adventures.

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