Canadian Basketball Player Describes His Experience of Playing Against Kobe Bryant

Published 03/29/2021, 4:30 PM EDT
LOS ANGELES, CA – OCTOBER 28: The Lakers’ Kobe Bryant scores 24 points during the Lakers’ 112-111 loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves in their season opener Wednesday night at Staples Center. The Los Angeles Lakers open their 2015-16 season against the Minnesota Timberwolves Wednesday night. 10/28/15 (Photo by Kevin Sullivan/Digital First Media/Orange County Register via Getty Images)


Los Angeles Lakers’ Kobe Bryant was one of the best players of all-time. While his scoring exploits may be the reason for his popularity, he was one of the best on the court for his all-around ability. And one of the most underrated aspects of his game was his athleticism.

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He came into the league as an 18-year-old and hardly had any playing time. But he received a lot of attention after he won the dunk contest in his rookie season. That was just a glimpse of his athleticism. And gradually, he used his athleticism, combined it with his insane skill to become a star in the league.

During a recent interview, Canadian basketball player Ransford Brempong spoke about the time when he had faced Bryant. Although he was never in the NBA, he played against a lot of stars like Dwyane Wade, Chris Paul, and Kobe. Brempong admitted he isn’t a person who gets star-struck, but it still happened when he faced Kobe.

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“He moved differently,” Brempong said. “It was almost like he wasn’t doing things. It looked like he was doing it slower, but he was doing them quicker.”

Athleticism: An underrated aspect of Kobe Bryant

During discussions about some of the best athletic NBA players, Kobe rarely makes an appearance. While comparing him to other players like Russell Westbrook, Blake Griffin, and even Giannis Antetokounmpo, Kobe doesn’t stand out because his playstyle didn’t rely on only his athleticism.

Kobe wasn’t the fastest player in his prime, but that was also because he was a few inches taller than the speedy guards. But there was hardly anyone his size who could outpace or even out-muscle him. Along with speed, Kobe also had agility, footwork, and balance to make it all work.

LOS ANGELES, CA – JANUARY 26: Laker’s Kobe Bryant ,24, celebrates a three pointer in the fourth quarter as the Lakers beat the Nuggets 122-107 during a first round playoff basketball game between the Denver Nuggets and the Los Angeles Lakers on April 23. 2008 at Staples Center in Los Angeles. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)

Bryant combined all of this to pull off some of the meanest dunks in the early 2000s. Despite not having hops like Vince Carter or Michael Jordan, Bryant had enough in his bag to leave players embarrassed on a poster.

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Frequent injuries affected this part of his game. But since he was incredibly skilled as well, he still managed to be a legendary player. Fans can only wonder how his career would have shaped if not for his injuries. Regardless, Kobe left the league in 2016 as one of the game has ever seen.

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Aaron Mathew

1664 articles

Aaron Mathew is a sports analyst at EssentiallySports. A graduate in Mass Media from Xavier’s College, Aaron has been a part of EssentiallySports since May 2020 where he covers both NBA and NCAA basketball news, and has also covered NBA 2K. In the past, Aaron has worked at the Sports Desk of Mumbai Mirror.

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