Kevin Garnett to 17-Year-Old Kobe Bryant: ‘Who the F*ck’s Son Is This?’

Published 11/23/2021, 10:30 AM EST


Back in 1996, the Los Angeles Lakers reaped the benefits of a phenomenal Draft Day swap deal. Ever since his younger days, late legend Kobe Bryant was a fiery competitor. Earning tons of fans for his fearless attitude, Kobe was nicknamed ‘Mamba’. Entering the league as a young 17-year-old, former player Kevin Garnett recalled his first meeting with the icon. What followed, was an absolutely boisterous career.

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Originally, Kobe Bryant was selected by the Charlotte Hornets, as their 13th overall pick. However, as he revealed later himself, the franchise told him that he couldn’t add much productivity to their setup. This resulted in a trade to the men in yellow and purple, in what eventually became one of the greatest trades in NBA history. Kobe won five titles, made 18 All-star appearances, and was a 2-time Finals MVP. But his 25 point average in the league wasn’t earned overnight. His infant days in the league were extremely challenging, and not many anticipated him to build such a legacy.

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Kevin Garnett remembers his meeting with young Kobe Bryant

One of the Minnesota Timberwolves and Boston Celtics legends, 45-year-old Kevin Garnett’s career pretty much clashed with that of Kobe. A 15-time All-star himself, Garnett was present when Kobe was rising as a star in the league. Speaking on the ‘Million Dollaz Worth of Game’ podcast, the 2008 NBA champion how he met a young Bryant, and indirectly insulted him at the time. “Kobe was crazy man, this is a crazy story,” he began.

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He continued, “I remember playing, I had a decent game, this is in April. So we’re going home, we’re making no playoffs, my first year, I had a better second half than first half. I come in, I had to do some press, so I come in and the locker room’s going crazy you know, it’s just everywhere. The equipment, guys picking up stuff, people getting showers going like this. So I saw a kid sitting in my seat and I thought maybe somebody’s son. So I was like what’s up get right here? He [Kobe] was like what’s up yo what’s up, I’m Kobe Bryant, I’m trying to come to the league. And I had just walked into the locker room like who the f*ck’s son is this?”

(Denver, Colorado – Friday, May 29, 2009) Lakers guard Kobe Bryant yells out in frustration after just missing a circus shot against the Nuggets defense late in the first half in game 6 of the NBA Western Conference Finals at the Pepsi Center. (Photo by Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

We can totally picture the teenager exuding energy during his younger days. This translated into some impeccable energy on the court, the impact of which will never be forgotten in NBA history!

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Sankalp Harikrishnan

451 articles

Sankalp Harikrishnan is an NBA and Tennis writer at EssentiallySports. He aspires to pursue Sports Journalism and has represented his institution in cricket, badminton, football and table tennis. Sankalp idolises Roger Federer and Stephen Curry, and has an inherent love for statistics.

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