Sunday Kobe Bryant played his last All-Star game. I didn’t even watch the game (I think All-Star games in all sports are boring, I only like the other activities over the weekend) but the tribute paid to him before the game was wonderful.
The video was great and Magic Johnson introduction was rather touching. I also liked what Magic had to say about Kobe, not yesterday, but in one of those days when everybody was talking about Kobe’s retirement: “Kobe was the closest thing to Michael Jordan that happened in the NBA.”
First, it’s amazing to notice the tribute to Jordan, calling him a “thing” which means he is above being only a talented athlete and the greatest who ever played the game. He is something else. Second, I totally agree.
I was fortunate enough to have seen MJ in his prime and I can safely say that Kobe was the player who got closer to his excellence, which means if Jordan was 100, Kobe was about 70. Yes, that’s how great Jordan was. The second greatest is 30 points behind him.
But the most important thing here is to pay tribute to Kobe. 81 points in one game, 5 NBA titles, Lakers all-time leading scorer, at least 50 points 24 times in his career, 5 times he scored at least 60, 18 times All-Star and 9 times named for the NBA defensive team tied for most of all time with Michael Jordan, Kevin Garnett and Gary Payton.
Last year there was a lot of talk around the NBA about whether or not LeBron James would be able to be better than Jordan (which is ridiculous because nobody will be better than him) and I always listened to those talks and think: “Wait a minute. LeBron still hasn’t surpassed Kobe yet; when he gets to Kobe, than we can have these delusional thoughts about surpassing Jordan.”
Can LeBron surpass Kobe? Can Stephen Curry surpass Kobe? We have no idea, but for now, let’s just say farewell to the second greatest of all time (or first, if you think that Jordan is from another planet) and cherish the wonderful memories he left us. Will be missed.
Beth Hart – Better than Home
Rick Wakeman – Journey to the Centre of the Earth
Rush – Hemispheres
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