Millennium Post

Farewell Mamba

January 26 went down as a black Sunday in NBA history. NBA legend Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash in California along with his daughter Gianna. An apparent news flash broke millions of hearts, plunging them into a period of mourn. With people wanting to believe otherwise, debunking it as fake news, the reality seemed destined to be gloomy. Kobe Bryant was no more. Condolences for his family that is survived by his wife Vanessa and three daughters poured in as the world remembered the star who inspired and captivated millions by his talent and game. The NBA, Hollywood, Government, sporting fraternity, residents and the fans over the world wished they did not see the day which took one of the Basket Ball's legend away from them. Drafted to the NBA out of High School back in 1996, Kobe Bryant's legacy speaks for himself. Kobe was named an All-Star in 18 of the 20 seasons that he played for Los Angeles Lakers in his career before hanging up the boots in April 2016. In those 20 seasons, Kobe helped the Lakers to five championships, winning the NBA MVP award for 2007-08 season as well as being named MVP in NBA finals for both 2009 and 2010. Kobe's most notable performance remains an unforgettable 81 points scored against Toronto Raptors in 2006 — the second-highest single-game total in NBA history. Kobe won the NBA scoring champion award twice as well as two successive Olympic golds for the USA in 2008 and 2012. But above all the statistics and the trophy-laden career at Lakers, what Kobe really earned was global appreciation. Kobe made kids fall in love with basketball. It is only natural for him to receive such a great magnitude of reception from the world upon his untimely demise. As Leonardo DiCaprio marks in his tweet, LA will never be the same. In his retirement, the legend also won an Academy Award in 2018 for his short-animated film titled "Dear Basketball". The sheer size of his mourners tells the tale of the legend that he was and the rich legacy that he leaves behind. For many, Kobe Bryant was the face of basketball. When you see a kid as far as India quietly holding Kobe's iconic number 24 jersey in hands and mourning in solitude, you understand the kind of player he was and the impact he made. He was scheduled to headline the 2020 NBA Hall of Fame nominees and even though he could not earn it in person, the world will always remember the Black Mamba as a legend of the game.

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