Kobe Bryant: 7 things to know about Los Angeles Lakers legend

ByMatthew Cardenas KABC logo
Sunday, January 26, 2020
Kobe Bryant killed in Calabasas helicopter crash
The five-time NBA champion was 41-years-old.

FRESNO, Calif. -- Tragic news broke Sunday morning that NBA and Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant passed away in a helicopter crash.

With that, we look back on the incredible career of Bryant.

#1: Draft Night

Bryant played for the Los Angeles Lakers for the entirety of his 20-year NBA career, going straight to the NBA out of Lower Merion High School in Philadelphia. He was originally drafted with the 13th overall pick in the 1996 NBA Draft but was traded to the Lakers on draft night.

Watch Kobe tell the world he's going pro

#2: Scoring Legend

Bryant is one of the NBA's highest scorers of all time. He is currently 4th on the NBA's all-time scoring list with 33,643 points.

In this June 17, 2009 photo Kobe Bryant smiles as he and his daughter Gianna Maria-Onore walk up the steps after the victory parade celebrating the Lakers' NBA championship in LA.
AP Photo/Jae C. Hong

One of Bryant's most legendary performances was in 2006 when he scored 81 points against the Toronto Raptors. It is the second-highest scoring output in NBA history.

Bryant finished his career with six 60-point games, 26 50-point games, and 134 40-point games. He was the NBA scoring champion in 2006 and 2007.

#3: Champion

Bryant finished his NBA career with a 5-2 record in seven NBA Finals appearances. He and Shaquille O'Neal dominated the league as a duo from 2000-2002 and won three straight championships.

His two other championships came in 2009 and 2010 against the Orlando Magic and rival Boston Celtics. Bryant was named the NBA Finals MVP in those two titles.

#4: Perennial All-Star:

The All-Star Game was a regular for Bryant. He has the second-most All-Star Game appearances with 18, winning the All-Star Game MVP four times.

#5: MVP

Bryant's lone MVP season came in 2008, where he finished with averages of 28.3 points, 6.3 assists, and 5.4 rebounds. He led the Lakers to a 57-25 record and an NBA Finals appearance that season.

#6: Olympic Legend

Donning the USA uniform during the Summer Olympics was part of Bryant's career. He is a two-time gold medalist, being a big part of the USA's medal runs in 2008 and 2012. Bryant averaged 13.6 PPG for his Olympic career.

#7: The Final Game

Bryant's final NBA game in 2016 took the sports world by storm, scoring 60 points against the Utah Jazz and taking over down the stretch of the fourth quarter. He became the oldest player in NBA history to score 60 points at 37 years old.

In his goodbye message to the NBA world, Bryant had two words: "Mamba Out."