“You really see it” Kobe Bryant followed Michael Jordan’s footsteps to NBA greatness according to Lakers’ president Jeanie Buss

Kobe Bryant was one of the greatest players in NBA history, but he did not achieve his success alone. He had a mentor, a role model, and a rival in Michael Jordan, who inspired him to pursue excellence on and off the court. Lakers president Jeanie Buss recently revealed how Bryant copied Jordan’s game and learned from his legacy.

In an interview with tennis legend Jimmy Connors on his podcast Holding Court, Buss said that Bryant was obsessed with Jordan and wanted to emulate his every move. She recalled watching Bryant play against Jordan in the 1998 All-Star Game and noticing how he studied his opponent’s moves.

“He was like a sponge,” Buss said. “He would watch everything Michael did, how he warmed up, how he tied his shoes, how he talked to the referees. He wanted to absorb everything.”

Bryant also had a close relationship with Phil Jackson, who coached both Jordan and Bryant to multiple championships. Jackson helped Bryant understand Jordan’s mindset and philosophy of winning. Buss said that Jackson often showed Bryant clips of Jordan’s games and taught him how to be a leader.

“Phil would show him tapes of Michael’s games and say ‘Look at this situation, look at how he handled this,’” Buss said. “He would give him pointers on how to deal with teammates, how to motivate them, how to get them on the same page.”

Bryant went on to win five NBA titles with the Lakers, two more than Jordan won with the Bulls. He also surpassed Jordan in career points and became one of the most prolific scorers of all time. He earned respect from fans, peers, and opponents alike for his work ethic, competitiveness, and passion.

Buss said that she admired both Jordan and Bryant for their contributions to the game of basketball and their impact on society. She said that they were more than just athletes; they were icons who transcended sports.

“They both changed the world,” Buss said. “They both inspired millions of people around the globe. They both left a legacy that will never be forgotten.”



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