WATCH: When a 15-YO Kobe Bryant Dominated His First Ever Dunk Contest and Proved He’s a Prodigy

Published 01/09/2021, 10:16 PM EST
New York, N.Y.: Los Angeles Lakers’ Kobe Bryant flips the ball to movie director Spike Lee who yelled at Bryant the whole second half of the game at Madison Square Garden against the New York Knicks on Sunday Dec. 23, 2007. (Photo by J. Conrad Williams, Jr./Newsday via Getty Images)


Looking at a young Kobe Bryant, one would be quick to tag him as a prodigy. He was a natural in every sense and looked like someone who was born to shine because of the mindset he owned since the very beginning. Such personalities only need the right platform and boom, there they go!

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Just as the world knows the Black Mamba snakes for causing human deaths, Kobe became known for causing humiliation inside the paint. His dunk posters on Dwight Howard, Yao Ming, LeBron James, Clint Capela, and others are worth remembering. So when did he show early signs of beholding this stupendous skill?

Kobe Bryant making power dunks during his teenage

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Kobe’s father, Joe ‘Jellybean’ Bryant, was a forward player for the Sixers. He and his wife Pamela Bryant gave birth to the future 5-time NBA Champion in 1978. Joe ensured Kobe walks onto the path shown by his dad. However, little did he know that Kobe was born for greatness.

In 1992, The Philadelphia Inquirer called a 14-YO Kobe as ‘the blossoming marquee player,’ and that’s where it all began. Kobe was the second tallest player for the Lower Merion High School team, standing tall at 6’4”.

As a sophomore in the following year, The Black Mamba averaged a double-double with 22 points and 10 boards per game. He was a 6’5” soon overcoming the shadow of his father and making a name for himself.

Take a look at his first-ever dunk contest as a 15-YO teen who would dance and dunk, all at the same time.

Soon after that season, the Philly-born kid became a household name as he continued his high school dominance. 

Most memorable dunk ever!

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It is impossible for anyone to claim which was the most impressive out of innumerable brilliant dunks by this legend. Still, let us check out this one time when Kobe harnessed the power of biomechanics and tested physics with his ability to float in the air. Take a look at this impossible-looking shot –

The way he punished Steve Nash is just phenomenal. It was as if he declared that he was the king near the ring. He made this crucial dunk against a strong Phoenix Suns and helped the Lakers win Game 2. 

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So which Kobe Bryant dunk is your most favorite? Help us know in the comments.

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Sourabh Singh

1254 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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