The Legacy of Kobe Bryant

While some people just thought of Kobe as a basketball player, the impact he made on millions of people goes way deeper than just the game of basketball. With his death, he leaves a hole in the hearts of many that can never be filled.


Logan Schaubert, Sports Editor

Athlete, role model, champion, legend, mamba, husband, father and friend- these are just a few words that can describe Kobe Bryant. Kobe, his daughter Gianna and seven others were killed in a helicopter crash on January 26, 2020, outside Los Angeles, California. This left the NBA Family and millions of people heartbroken over the tragic death of the NBA Legend.


When people think of Kobe Bryant, many just think of the numerous accolades he obtained over his long, luxurious career, including being a five-time NBA Champion, league MVP, two-time finals MVP, 18-time all-star, two Olympic gold medals and one of the greatest players of all time. I could go on and on about what an amazing athlete he was, but everyone already knows that. Kobe Bryant was so much more than just an athlete. He changed the way the game of basketball was played. People used to say there would never be another Michael Jordan. Kobe was the closest thing to ever come close to competing with Jordan’s legacy. He was our generation’s MJ. His mentality for this game was beyond imaginable. Kobe woke up at 4 a.m. every single day for 20 years. He would spend over eight hours in the gym, even on the days that the Lakers would have a game. Even after working out for so long, he would dominate his opponent that same night. Kobe Bryant was a role model for kids like me who grew up wanting to be just like him.

I think the thing that makes all of this so sad is that our generation grew up with Kobe. Our parents still talk about how sad this country was when legends like Elvis and JFK died suddenly. Kobe Bryant was our Elvis. Millions of kids, including me, grew up wanting to be just like him- to have that same mentality as him, to be able to say that no one is going to stop me from my dreams. We grew up in a time that whenever you were going to throw a piece of trash into the garbage, you would yell “Kobe!” We grew up knowing that whenever we saw Kobe biting his jersey, he was about to take over a game. 

I personally was lucky enough to be at his final game in Denver. Kobe, as a 38-year-old man, dropped 30 points. That day, I remember thinking that I could not wait to see what he had planned for the future. But now reality is setting in as I write this. There will never be another time that we see Kobe and his daughter GiGi on the sideline at a Lakers game. We will never again see Kobe’s huge smile while he was with his family. We will never again be able to see him full of joy while talking about his girls and how he is a “girl dad.”  We will never see him write any more children’s books, which he started doing after he retired. We will never get to see Kobe give his Hall of Fame speech, which he would have been inducted into this August. 

I think the biggest thing we can all take away from this tragic death is to love each other. If you have had problems with someone, let it go. We never know when our loved ones can be taken from us. When Kobe and Giana stepped onto that helicopter, they never would have thought those were going to be their last moments on Earth together. Do not be afraid to tell someone you love them, because only God knows when it is our time. We have to live life to the fullest, like Kobe did, while we still have time left on this Earth. 

I think we all have to start living through Kobe. With his death, many people have been devastated. But Kobe would want us to move on with our lives, and do something with the time we have left. Live with that Mamba Mentality that no one is ever going to outwork you, just as Kobe did.

I would just like to thank Kobe Bean Bryant for giving me, a 17-year-old kid with dreams of playing basketball at the next level, hope to never give up and to always outwork everyone. I thank you for always pushing through adversity and inspiring others. Thank you for being the best role model for fathers out there, and supporting your kids through everything. We will see you again one day in Heaven, but until then we will try to keep your legacy alive. 

Kobe may have summed it up best in his Academy Award winning animated short film called “Dear Basketball.” – “I’m ready to let you go. I want you to know now, so we both can savor every moment we have left together. The good and the bad. We have given each other all that we have, and we both know, no matter what I do next I’ll always be that kid with the rolled-up socks, garbage can in the corner. Five seconds on the clock. Ball in my hands. Five, four, three, two, one. Love you always, Kobe.” No matter how much time goes by, we will never forget Kobe Bean Bryant. His legacy will live on with his friends, family, fans and future generations.