Candace Parker Recreates an Iconic Kobe Bryant Picture After Leading Chicago Sky to Their First WNBA Title

Published 10/17/2021, 11:52 PM EDT
Oct 17, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Sky forward/center Candace Parker (3) celebrates after the second half of game four of the 2021 WNBA Finals against the Phoenix Mercury at Wintrust Arena. Mandatory Credit: Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports


The WNBA saw a miraculous comeback in the 2021 finals. The Chicago Sky led by Candace Parker, won their first ever championship in franchise history. Looking at Parker’s incredible win, it is reminiscent of Kobe Bryant and his efforts against the Boston Celtics. Likewise, she came to her hometown and put the city on her back in the series clincher.

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Bryant was a mentor to Parker. She trained with him multiple times and even had a close relationship with his daughter, Gigi Bryant. After his passing, she was heartbroken. Now, she has won her second championship in true warrior fashion, making everyone proud.

Oct 17, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Sky head coach James Wade, left, and Chicago Sky forward/center Candace Parker (3) after the Chicago Sky beat the Phoenix Mercury 80-74 in game four of the 2021 WNBA Finals at Wintrust Arena. Mandatory Credit: Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports

Her ‘never give up’ attitude and doing whatever it takes are qualities that Bryant himself possessed. Hence, it is a sight to see Parker win a championship for Kobe.

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Candace Parker finishes the job

The Chicago Suns were not in favorable position for most part of the game. Mercury’s center, Brittany Griner put them in the tough spot with her 28 point effort. However, Parker stepped up when all seemed to fade away. She scored some clutch shots and even went on a 9 point run from the end of the third quarter. In true ‘Mamba’ fashion, she gave it everything she had right until the end.

Moreover, she also displayed the clutch factor hitting the big game tying three to bring Chicago back in the game. After his final game, Kobe said that rest only at the end. Parker truly lived up to those words as he lifted the championship. She never gave up till the end and her efforts bore the desired result for her. After the win, she recreated Kobe’s iconic locker room picture to pay her tribute.

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A truly great honor for her mentor, as winning was the most important thing for Bryant as well. Even before the finals, Parker has had nothing but love for the ‘Mamba’. Even after winning, she spoke about how Kobe and his daughter have had a big impact on their league. She said, “I think Kobe and Gigi have meant so much to our league,” Parker said. “So the advice I got from Vanessa before the game was, ‘Play Gigi’s way.’ And I think we’ve done that. We did that all playoffs. And so I just want to acknowledge [Kobe’s] contribution.”

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Kobe Bryant always showed support for the WNBA through his little daughter. Not only did he mentor Candace, but he promoted the WNBA in any way he could. Moreover, his daughter Gigi had a dream of playing in the WNBA. Hence, Parker truly made them proud, winning this one for them.

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Anuj Talwalkar

505 articles

Anuj Talwalkar is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. He is a student studying at NM College in Mumbai, aspiring to pursue sports management to follow his love for sports. Anuj started following the NBA last year, and he loves to combine his passion for writing with his understanding of basketball.

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