Growing up watching Kobe during my college days, he was the closest thing to Michael Jordan. I never expected for him to be gone so soon.
1) 20 Years With the Los Angeles Lakers
Kobe Bryant was a Lakers lifer. Though he was drafted by the Charlotte Hornets with the 13th pick of the 1996 NBA Draft, Kobe was immediately traded to the Lakers. He never played for any other NBA team.
Kobe holds the second-longest tenure with a single NBA team at 20 years. Dirk Nowitzki has the longest tenure with a single team; he spent 21 years with the Dallas Mavericks.
2) Lakers All-Time Points Leader
Kobe is the all-time leading scorer in Lakers' history with 33,643 points. He is 8,451 points higher than his closest competitor, Jerry West, who has 25,192 points.
The next players in the top five are Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (24,176 points), Elgin Baylor (23,149 points) and Magic Johnson (17,707 points).
3) Fourth All-Time in Scoring
Kobe is the fourth all-time leading scorer in NBA history with 33,643 points. He surpassed Michael Jordan, who had 32,292 points.
Kobe was previously in third place until he was surpassed by LeBron James.
4) Two-Time Scoring Champion
Kobe is a two-time scoring champion. He was the top scorer in the 2005-06 season with an average of 35.4 points per game. In the following 2006-07 season, he led the league with an average of 31.6 points per game.
This makes it back-to-back seasons when he was the scoring champ.
5) NBA Most Valuable Player (2008)
Kobe had one of his best seasons in the 2007-08 season. He played in all 82 games and averaged 28.3 points, 6.3 rebounds, 5.4 assists and 1.8 steals.
He also shot 45.9% from the field, 84% from the free-throw line, and 36.1% from the three-point line.
6) Five-Time NBA Champion (2000–2002, 2009, 2010)
Kobe Bryant is one of the few NBA players to have at least five championships.
He joins legendary players such as George Mikan, Magic Johnson, Dennis Rodman, and Tim Duncan with this distinction.
Kobe won three championships with Shaquille O' Neil as his running mate and two championships with Pau Gasol as his co-star.
7) Two-Time Finals MVP (2009, 2010)
While Shaquille O' Neil was the Finals MVP of the three-peat Lakers, Kobe was the Finals MVP of the two-peat Lakers.
Kobe averaged 32.4 points, 5.6 rebounds, 7.4 assists, 1.4 blocks and 1.4 steals against the Orlando Magic in the Finals.
He also averaged 28.6 points, 8 rebounds, 3.9 assists, 0.7 blocks and 2.1 steals against the Boston Celtics in the Finals.
8) Three-Peat (2000–2002)
To win one championship is difficult enough. It is extremely difficult to win three consecutive championships. Very few squads have achieved this rare feat.
We have the 1952–1954 Minneapolis Lakers, the 1959–1966 Boston Celtics, the 1991–1993 Chicago Bulls, the 1996–1998 Chicago Bulls, and the 2000–2002 Los Angeles Lakers.
9) Two-Peat (2009–2010)
Winning two consecutive champions is quite an accomplishment.
The teams that were able to achieve this feat include the 1949-1950 Minneapolis Lakers, 1987-1988 Los Angeles Lakers, 1989-1990 Detroit Pistons, 1994-1995 Houston Rockets, 2009-2010 Los Angeles Lakers, 2012-2013 Miami Heat and the 2017-2018 Golden State Warriors.
10) 18-Time NBA All-Star (1998, 2000–2016)
Kobe ranks in second place for most All-Star appearances with 18. He is second only to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, who has 19 appearances.
Kobe appeared in the All-Star game in 1998 and from 2000 to 2016.
11) Four-Time NBA All-Star Game MVP (2002, 2007, 2009, 2011)
Kobe was a regular in the All-Star Game with 18 appearances. He was the All-Star Game MVP in 2002 with 31 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists, and 1 steal.
In 2007, he went off with 31 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists, and 6 steals. He was again named the MVP of the annual event.
The 2009 All-Star Game showcased Kobe's talents with 27 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists, and 4 steals.
2011 was the last time Kobe got the NBA All-Star Game MVP. He did not disappoint with his 37 points, 14 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals.
12) Most Players From the Same Team in an NBA All-Star Game
There have only been nine occasions in the All-Star Game where four players from the same team competed in the annual event.
1998 was a special year for the Los Angeles Lakers as they featured Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O' Neil as starters while Nick Van Exel and Eddie Jones were reserves. Kobe wasn't too shabby in the game as he had 18 points, 6 rebounds, 1 assist and 2 steals in just 22 minutes of action.
13) NBA All-Rookie Second Team (1997)
The 1996-1997 rookie class was filled with stars such as Allen Iverson, Shareef Abdur-Rahim, Stephon Marbury, Antoine Walker, Steve Nash, and Ray Allen.
A young Kobe Bryant still managed to make it to the NBA All-Rookie Second Team.
14) All-Time Lakers Steals Leader
Kobe was a prolific defender. He is the Lakers' all-time steals leader with 1,944 steals.
This is 220 more than second-place leader Magic Johnson, who has 1,724 steals.
15) 11-Time All-NBA First Team (2002–2004, 2006–2013)
The All-NBA Team is an honor given to the very best players in the league. These are voted upon by sportswriters and broadcasters.
Originally, there were two NBA teams of five players each. Since the 1988–89 season, the All-NBA Team was expanded into three teams of five players each.
Kobe won All-NBA First Team honors 11 times in his storied career.
16) Two-Time All-NBA Second Team (2000, 2001)
Kobe won the honor of being selected to the All-NBA Second Team in 2000 and 2001 while on his way to superstardom.
17) Two-Time All-NBA Third Team (1999, 2005)
Kobe was selected to the All-NBA Third Team in 1999 and 2005.
18) Nine-Time NBA All-Defensive First Team (2000, 2003, 2004, 2006–2011)
Kobe Bryant was known for his high flying antics and scoring ability. This is why many people overlook his defensive prowess. Kobe was on the NBA All-Defensive First Team nine times.
The NBA All-Defensive Team is an honor bestowed to the top 10 best defenders of the season. It is divided into the First and Second Team. The voting is conducted by a panel of writers and broadcasters.
19) Three-Time NBA All-Defensive Second Team (2001, 2002, 2012)
Kobe Bryant was an excellent defender. He used his quickness and wingspan to shut down opposing players. This allowed him to be on the NBA All-Defensive Second Team three times.
20) NBA Slam Dunk Contest Champion (1997)
Kobe Bryant was a showman of the highest order. He handily won the 1997 Slam Dunk Contest with his tantalizing array of dunks.
He went against Darvin Ham, Chris Carr, Bob Sura, Michael Finley, and Ray Allen.
21) Numbers 8 and 24 Retired by the Los Angeles Lakers
Kobe Bryant is the only player with two numbers retired by the same team. He had number 8 and 24 retired in December 2017 during the halftime ceremony of a Lakers-Warriors game.
22) Lakers All-Time Leader in Field Goals Made
Kobe was a prolific scorer. There wasn't a shot that he wouldn't take. It didn't matter how difficult it was or how many defenders were in front of him.
This led to Kobe having 11,719 total career field goals. This is the most in Lakers history.
23) Lakers All-Time Leader in Games Played
Kobe was the ironman for the Lakers. He played in 1,346 games for the franchise. This is 253 more than the second-place leader, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
24) Lakers All-Time Leader in Minutes Played
Kobe played for 48,637 minutes. This is 11,145 more minutes than the second-place leader, which is Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
© 2021 Jan Michael Ong