Kobe’s Last Game


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“Mamba out.” Kobe Bryant’s last words hit my heart hard last night, as I realized this would be the last time I get to see him play in an NBA game. Bryant’s emotional finale involved a 60-point performance, the most by any player in a single game this season, but he also took 50 shots, the most by any player in a single game this season as well.

Let me get one thing off my chest: I hate Kobe Bryant. I mean, who doesn’t? He is the ultimate villain, unless you are a Los Angeles Laker fan. Fans all across the country have constantly seen Bryant put down a major beating on their favorite teams throughout the years. He is the only player to score 40 points or more against every single team in his career. But just because I hate him, doesn’t mean I don’t respect him. In my opinion, he is hands down the second best player to ever play the game.

Last night, it was hard to hate Bryant. The energy in the Staples Center was ridiculous and so was his performance. There were moments when you couldn’t tell the difference between vintage MVP Bryant and old man Bryant if you were watching the game. To put up 60 points in your final game, for the same team you played your first game with, is something you can’t write better.

Bryant’s 20 years in the league have changed basketball as much as anyone. Even if you aren’t a basketball fan, you still shout “Kobe!” when you shoot a piece of paper into a trashcan. Although all of Bryant’s plays in the NBA are now a thing of the past, we will never forget the impact he left on the league.