Kobe Bryant | Biography, Stats, & Facts (2024)

Kobe Bryant

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Category:

In full:
Kobe Bean Bryant
Died:
January 26, 2020, Calabasas, California (aged 41)
Awards And Honors:
Olympic Games
Basketball Hall of Fame (2020)
Most Valuable Player (2008)
18x NBA All-Star selections
2x NBA scoring champion
5x NBA champion
15x All-NBA selections
12x All-Defensive selections
4x NBA All-Star Game MVP
2x NBA Finals MVP
NBA Most Valuable Player (2007–08)
selected for NBA All-Rookie team, 1996–97
Notable Family Members:
son of Joe Bryant
son of Pamela Bryant
married to Vanessa Laine Bryant (m. 2001)
father of Natalia Diamante Bryant (b. 2003)
father of Gianna Maria-Onore Bryant (b. 2006)
father of Bianka Bella Bryant (b. 2016)
father of Capri Kobe Bryant (b. 2019)
brother of Sharia Bryant
brother of Shaya Bryant

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Recent News

Feb. 11, 2024, 4:57 PM ET (AP)

Iowa's Caitlin Clark needs 8 points to set NCAA scoring record after finishing with 31 vs. Nebraska

Feb. 8, 2024, 9:33 PM ET (AP)

Kobe Bryant immortalized with a 19-foot bronze statue outside the Lakers' downtown arena

Jan. 27, 2024, 9:14 AM ET (AP)

Doncic scores franchise-record 73 points, tied for 4th in NBA history, as Mavs edge Hawks 148-143

Jan. 26, 2024, 11:30 PM ET (AP)

Another scoring spree in the NBA: Luka Doncic scores 73, Devin Booker has 62

Top Questions

Where was Kobe Bryant born?

Kobe Bryant was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S., on August 23, 1978.

When was Kobe Bryant first named MVP in the NBA?

In 2008 Kobe Bryant was named the National Basketball Association (NBA) league’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) for the first time in his career.

How many Olympic gold medals did Kobe Bryant win?

Kobe Bryant won two Olympic gold medals as a member of the U.S. men’s basketball teams at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games and the 2012 London Olympic Games.

When was Kobe Bryant inducted into the Hall of Fame?

Kobe Bryant was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2020.

When did Kobe Bryant die?

On January 26, 2020, Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter were among a group traveling to a girls basketball game in a helicopter when it crashed, killing all nine people aboard.

Kobe Bryant (born August 23, 1978, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.—died January 26, 2020, Calabasas, California) American professional basketball player, who helped lead the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association (NBA) to five championships (2000–02 and 2009–10).

Bryant’s father, Joe (“Jelly Bean”) Bryant, was a professional basketball player who spent eight seasons in the NBA and eight more playing in Italy, where Bryant went to school. When his family returned to the United States, Bryant played basketball at Lower Merion High School in Ardmore, Pennsylvania, where he received several national Player of the Year awards and broke the southeastern Pennsylvania scoring record set by Wilt Chamberlain with 2,883 points. Bryant opted to forgo college and declared himself eligible for the NBA draft when he graduated from high school. The Charlotte Hornets chose him with the 13th pick of the 1996 draft. He was traded to the Lakers shortly thereafter and became the second youngest NBA player in history when the 1996–97 season opened. He quickly proved his merit with the Lakers and was selected for the NBA All-Star Game in just his second season, becoming the youngest All-Star.

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Bryant was forced to share the role of the Lakers’ star player with his popular and talented teammate Shaquille O’Neal. The two had an uneasy relationship, but they found success under the leadership of Phil Jackson, who became coach of the Lakers in 1999. Bryant, a shooting guard, and O’Neal, a centre, meshed into a remarkably effective combination, and, by the time Bryant was 23, the Lakers had won three consecutive NBA championships.

After winning their third title in 2002, Bryant and the Lakers encountered difficulties. In the 2003 playoffs the Lakers were defeated in the second round. Several months later Bryant was accused of raping a young woman in Colorado. He maintained his innocence, and all charges were eventually dropped when the woman refused to testify after a monthslong campaign of harassment by fans of Bryant and some members of the media. (Bryant later apologized, admitting that he realized his accuser did not believe their sexual encounter was consensual, and a civil suit was settled in 2005.) The incident greatly tarnished his image. Led by Bryant, the Lakers returned to the finals in 2004, but they were upset by the Detroit Pistons. O’Neal subsequently was traded, and Bryant emerged as the team’s sole leader.

Bryant led the league in scoring during the 2005–06 and 2006–07 seasons, and in 2008 he was named the league’s MVP for the first time in his career. Bryant won his fourth NBA title in 2009, and he was named the finals MVP after averaging a stellar 32.4 points per game in the series. He led the Lakers to their third straight Western Conference championship in 2009–10, and he was once more named NBA finals MVP after the Lakers defeated the Boston Celtics in a seven-game series. The Lakers won division titles in each of the following seasons but were eliminated in the second round of each postseason. Entering the 2012–13 season, the Lakers added superstars Steve Nash and Dwight Howard to their lineup and were considered one of the preseason title favourites, but the disappointing team was barely on pace to qualify for the final Western Conference playoff spot when Bryant ruptured his Achilles tendon in April 2013, causing him to miss the rest of the season. (The Lakers were ultimately the eighth and final playoff seed that season and were swept in their first series.) He returned to the court in December 2013 but played in just six games before fracturing his kneecap and missing the remainder of that season as well. Bryant returned for the beginning of the 2014–15 season before he was again injured, tearing his rotator cuff in January 2015. He played almost all of the following season but again struggled, with a career-low .358 shooting percentage while averaging 17.6 points per game, and he retired following the last regular-season game of the 2015–16 season.

In addition to his professional accomplishments, he was a member of the gold medal-winning U.S. men’s basketball teams at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games and the 2012 London Olympic Games. In 2015 Bryant wrote the poem “Dear Basketball,” and two years later it served as the basis for a short film of the same name, which he also narrated. The work won an Academy Award for best animated short film. In 2018 Bryant published the book The Mamba Mentality: How I Play, in which he described his approach to basketball; the title reflected a nickname he bestowed upon himself during his playing days, “The Black Mamba.” On January 26, 2020, Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter were among a group traveling to a girls basketball game in a helicopter when it crashed, killing all nine people aboard. He was elected into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame later that year.

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The Editors of Encyclopaedia BritannicaThis article was most recently revised and updated by Adam Augustyn.

Kobe Bryant | Biography, Stats, & Facts (2024)

FAQs

What is Kobe Bryant's summary? ›

Kobe Bryant (born August 23, 1978, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.—died January 26, 2020, Calabasas, California) was an American professional basketball player, who helped lead the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association (NBA) to five championships (2000–02 and 2009–10).

How many MvPs did Kobe win? ›

Kobe Bryant was a professional basketball player who played for the Los Angeles Lakers for 20 seasons. He won the prestigious title of Most Valuable Player (MVP) four times. He first won the award in 2002, followed by wins in 2007, 2009, and 2011.

What stats does Kobe lead in? ›

Kobe Bryant: NBA statistics and records
  • Six career 60-point games.
  • 25 career 50-point games.
  • 20 seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers, the most with one team in NBA history.
  • His 18 consecutive All-Star Game selections is the league's longest streak, while only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has more selections ever (19).
Oct 21, 2022

How tall was Kobe Bryant at 16? ›

Kobe was 6'3" at 16. Bron was 6'7". The idea is they're almost full grown during their HS or Freshman year. We could have an average height for all the NBA players but doesn't make sense because they all play different positions and size could end up as either advantage/disadvantage.

What is Kobe famous for? ›

The city is the point of origin and namesake of Kobe beef, the home of Kobe University, and the site of one of Japan's most famous hot spring resorts, Arima Onsen.

What was Kobe Bryant's greatest achievement? ›

Career Stats
  • 5x NBA Champion with the Los Angeles Lakers.
  • 18x NBA ALL-STAR SELECTION.
  • 2008 NBA LEAGUE MVP.
  • 2x NBA FINALS MVP.
  • 2x OLYMPIC GOLD MEDALIST.
  • 11x ALL-NBA FIRST TEAM.

What is Kobe's famous number? ›

When late Los Angeles Lakers Hall of Fame shooting guard Kobe Bryant changed his jersey number from eight to 24 during the 2006-07 season, he explained it at the time as "growth" from his prior digits. "Then 24 is a growth from [No. 8]," Bryant once said.

What number was Kobe Bryant before he died? ›

8 and No. 24 jerseys. During his 20 year career, Kobe Bryant only played for the Los Angeles Lakers, after he was drafted by the team coming out of high school.

How many finals does Kobe have? ›

In his 20 seasons with the Lakers, Kobe Bryant played in seven NBA Finals and his teams won five championships. Bryant exits the game with a 5-2 record in the Finals and it compares favorably with some of his superstar contemporaries.

When did Kobe retire? ›

During the 2005-2006 season, he scored 81 points in a game against the Toronto Raptors. He is considered one of the greatest basketball players of all time. Bryant retired on April 13, 2016 after scoring 60 points in a Lakers win against the Utah Jazz. He won an Oscar and Emmy for his movie Dear Basketball.

How many years did Kobe play in the NBA? ›

Kobe Bryant was a shooting guard for the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association (NBA) for his entire 20-year career.

Who was better, Kobe or LeBron? ›

The two met 22 times in the regular season, with Lebron winning 16 contests and Kobe winning only 6. Championships: Regarding on-court success and legacy, championships play a pivotal role. Kobe Bryant, a five-time NBA champion, showcases a career marked by multiple victories at the highest level.

What is Kobe Bryant most remembered for? ›

Widely regarded as one of the greatest players in the history of the sport, Bryant won five NBA championships and was an 18-time All-Star, a 15-time member of the All-NBA Team, a 12-time member of the All-Defensive Team, the 2008 NBA Most Valuable Player (MVP), and a two-time NBA Finals MVP.

What is Kobe ranked all time? ›

1.LeBron James5896
2.Kobe Bryant4499
3.Michael Jordan4497
4.Kareem Abdul-Jabbar4422
5.Tim Duncan3939
5 more rows

What is Kobe Bryant's short history? ›

Bryant was born on August 23, 1978, in Philadelphia, the youngest of three children and the only son of Pamela Cox Bryant and former NBA player Joe Bryant. He was also the maternal nephew of NBA player John "Chubby" Cox. His parents named him after the famous beef of Kobe, Japan, which they saw on a restaurant menu.

What is the summary of Kobe Bryant Mamba Mentality book? ›

What is The Mamba Mentality about? The Mamba Mentality (2018) is Kobe Bryant's personal take on basketball, his life, and his career. It provides details on how he physically and mentally prepared for the game, the depth with which he analyzed his opponents, and how basketball taught him to lead and grow.

Who is Kobe Bryant and what happened to him? ›

On Jan. 26, 2020, basketball star Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others died in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California.

What was the most important thing to Kobe Bryant? ›

The most important thing is to try and inspire people so that they can be great in whatever they want to do.

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