27 JAN 2021
Born on August 23, 1978, in Pennsylvania, Kobe Bean Bryant was named after a Japanese steak.
Entering the NBA straight out of high school, Bryant in 1996 was the youngest player in NBA history at 18 years, 2 months and 11 days.
Juan Ocampo/NBAE via Getty Images
During the 1997 NBA Slam Dunk contest in Cleveland, Bryant eyed the basket and became the youngest player to win the contest.
Playing for Los Angeles Lakers team only, No. 8 and No. 24 were his jerseys for the team; and the team retired both after his tragic death.
A member of the US men's basketball team, Kobe won gold medals at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the 2012 London Olympics.
Kobe on December 14, 2014, surpassed Michael Jordan to become third player on the NBA's all-time scoring list, with 32,310 career points.
Here is a limited Black Mamba Basketball Shoe Pack that showcases all the 13 Nike pairs worn by Kobe during his career up until his final NBA season.
On March 4, 2018, 'Dear Basketball', a film, written and narrated by Kobe Bryant, won an Academy Award for the best short animated film.
On January 26, 2020, Bryant and his 13-year old daughter, Gianna, were among the 9 people who were killed in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California.
A five-time NBA champion, Bryant ranks fourth on the NBA's all-time scoring list with 33,643 points.