When did Kobe start playing basketball? The question is always on the minds of basketball fans, and it certainly isn’t difficult to figure out if you have been a fan of the Lakers since your childhood. Here is a short guide on Kobe’s Early Years, High School and College Career, and His NBA Rookie Season. It may be surprising to learn that Kobe started playing basketball at an early age.
The NBA star spent much of his childhood playing basketball. His father, a former NBA star, was an Italian-born man who played for many teams in his homeland. He was so enamored of the Italian language that he conducted interviews and even gave a class presentation about it. Kobe’s father was very fond of the country and his brother was a member of the Italian national team. The renowned basketball star grew up with a love for the Italian culture, and he became fluent in the language.
During the summers, Kobe was inspired by his father’s play. His father was scoring thirty to forty points a night, and Kobe’s talent was discovered. During the summer months, Kobe competed in the Sonny Hill League in Philadelphia. As a kid, he was sparked by his father’s success and his father’s game. At age 10, he became a basketball player and went on to play in professional leagues.
High School and College Career
The High School and College Career of Kobe Bryant, a professional basketball player, is well documented. The 6-foot-10 center was born in Philadelphia and grew up in parts of Italy. He attended Lower Merion High School in Ardmore, Pennsylvania, where he became the leading scorer. The team went 4-20 during his freshman year, but improved to 77-13 over the next three years. The team’s coach described him as a “complete package.”
The story of Kobe Bryant’s high school and college years is documented in numerous books. The “Air Apparent” by Joe Layden was published in 1998, and a biography of Kobe Bryant’s college years was published in 1999. Other books on Bryant include “The Kobe Story” by Wayne Coffey and Kobe: The High School and College Career of a Pro Basketball Player” by Roland Lazenby. The author Phil Taylor wrote “Together Again” in the June 2001 issue of Sports Illustrated.
After his rookie season with the Lakers, Kobe Bryant attended summer school at UCLA. The college he attended became his favorite, and he even became good friends with fellow players, including Lionel Messi and Ronaldinho. Kobe’s passion for soccer led him to make friends with these players and shift his support to FC Barcelona. Eventually, Bryant moved to the NBA, and it was only natural that his favorite team was the Los Angeles Lakers.
NBA Rookie Season
When did Kobe start playing basketball? That’s a question that keeps coming up. The NBA legend began playing basketball for his dad’s club at the age of seven. In Italy, he developed a work ethic that was unparalleled. He broke his dominant right hand playing basketball and learned to shoot the ball with his weaker left. His father had a habit of watching his son play basketball despite his injuries, and he was no exception. Throughout his childhood, Kobe learned to speak Italian and played lots of soccer.
In 1996, Kobe Bryant was drafted into the National Basketball Association (NBA) from the Charlotte Hornets. Although he did not attend college, he did play a few summer league games and averaged twenty-five points per game. During his rookie season, he was given limited playing time, but quickly began to show signs of improvement. At the age of 18, he was selected to the ‘NBA All-Rookie’ second team. He became the youngest player to make the All-Star team.
The 2000-2004 Seasons
The Lakers won 67 games in his rookie season, and Kobe Bryant took over as the team leader. He averaged over 22 points per game, while shooting nearly 50% from the field. The team reached the Western Conference Finals and lost to the Utah Jazz. Kobe’s leadership skills made him a favorite to win the NBA Title. His scoring average improved each season. In addition, his assists per game increased, and his team reached the postseason.
In his rookie season, Kobe joined a team that included Shaq and Karl Malone. He had a strong outside game, but was still not quite at his best. The team was bolstered by the addition of veteran players Gary Payton and Rick Fox. The team reached the NBA Finals, but lost in five games. Despite his lack of experience, Kobe still averaged 22.6 points per game and shot over 35 percent. He averaged 4.4 assists per game.
The 2005-2007 Seasons
The Lakers had a whirlwind season with a lot of changes. After a disappointing season the year before, Kobe started playing a dominant style of basketball. He averaged 25 points per game on a.469% shooting percentage. He played in 80 regular season games for the first time, and was voted All-NBA First Team. His off-season training was very successful, and he earned MVP and All-Defense honors.
After the Pistons’ season, the Lakers underwent major changes. After Phil Jackson resigned, Rudy Tomjanovich took his place. Kobe was replaced by an unproven group of players. Thirteen of the Lakers’ 16 players had five years or less of NBA experience. Those changes resulted in the team missing the playoffs for the first time in Kobe’s career.
In addition to his rookie year, the Lakers won their first championship since 1984. Kobe was the only player to win a championship in his first season and he did it at age 21. But he had to wait a long time to win his second title. His numbers improved dramatically after Phil Jackson took over the Lakers. After winning six titles in eight years, Phil Jackson was a master at basketball and the mental game. Michael Jordan took a similar approach and learned how to be a good teammate and win with his teammates.
The 2008-2011 Seasons
When Kobe Bryant first came onto the NBA scene, he was a bench player, scoring just under 15 points per game. His rookie year wasn’t as successful, but the league gave him a chance to make his mark, and he did so, leading the Western Conference in scoring with 31 points. Kobe’s first All-Star Game appearance came in 2009, when he made history as the youngest player to make the team.
As a rookie, Kobe Bryant played a limited number of minutes, but soon became a regular starter. He led the Lakers to a 17-2 start, and finished the season with a 21-3 record. He was named to his 11th All-Star Game, and also won the Western Conference Player of the Month award in December. He also won the Western Conference Player of the Week three times.
This year, Kobe Bryant scored his highest point total in a single season with 81 points against the San Antonio Spurs. Despite missing the first round of the playoffs, the Lakers won the title for the second time in three years. Kobe’s career highs included a second championship in as many seasons, and he dominated the playoffs in both 2009 and 2010.
The 2012-2016 Seasons
Kobe Bryant has been the best player in NBA history. He set franchise records for most 40-point games and most points scored in a single season. Kobe also won the league scoring title for the first time. He averaged 35.4 points per game, making him the fifth player in league history to average more than thirty points in a season. During his career, Kobe also became the most prolific scorer during the 2000s decade. He compiled 21,065 points in regular season games, surpassing Michael Jordan’s record.
Kobe began his career with the Lakers. He scored his first NBA points in December 2003 and was a staple of the lineup for the next five years. In April 2013, he ruptured his Achilles tendon and missed the rest of the season. He returned in December of that year and led the Lakers to their eighth straight NBA Finals. However, in February of 2014, he ruptured his right shoulder. In May of that year, Kobe played in just six games. In December of that year, he was a healthy player again, but he had to play with one hand due to a rotator cuff tear.
Post NBA Career and Death
During his NBA career, Kobe Bryant won 5 championships with the Los Angeles Lakers. He won three championships with Shaquille O’Neal while they were team mates, and two more after he was traded. He also won two Olympic Gold medals – one in 2008, the other in 2012. In addition, he finished his career as the third-highest scorer in the league.
After his NBA career, Kobe became the most decorated player in NBA history. He won four titles with the Lakers, including two championships, in 2008 and 2010. His fifth title, in 2010, came after a six-game series against the Boston Celtics. Kobe’s death has prompted many to question his post-NBA career and the death of his teammate. This is understandable, but what makes this legend different from the rest?
Despite his death and the loss of his family, Kobe Bryant’s legacy continues. A five-time NBA champion, Kobe won five championships and won the MVP award in 2008. In December 2014, he passed Michael Jordan to become the third-highest scorer in NBA history. He was tragically killed in a helicopter crash near his home in the Orange County suburbs of southern Los Angeles.