Los Angeles Lakers: My Sympathies to the Kobe Bryant Generation

(Photo by Frederic J. BROWN / AFP) (Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo by Frederic J. BROWN / AFP) (Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images) /

We share a letter for Los Angeles Lakers legend, Kobe Bryant, to the Kobe generation.

The Los Angeles Lakers and basketball world lost a legend in Kobe Bryant. This is a letter to everyone that was impacted by him.

Dear Kobe Generation,

I’m Canadian, therefore a Toronto Raptors fan. I grew up wanting to be “like Mike.” I wasn’t a huge fan of the Lakers or of Kobe, sorry Los Angeles. Yet, through the years that followed his basketball career, I started to develop a fondness for this father, husband, coach, mentor and athlete. My heart is torn for a whole generation of Kobe admirers.

I’m attributing this feeling of loss to the respect I have grown to have for Mr.Bryant, following an incredible basketball career. He embodied what Martin Luther King Jr. described as the first dimension of life, length. Kobe was blessed with tools just like you and me, and he exploited them to their full potential through his relentless work ethic.

He, as Martin Luther King Jr. went on to say “if it falls your lot to be a street sweeper, go on out and sweep streets like Michelangelo painted pictures; sweep streets like Handel and Beethoven composed music; sweep streets like Shakespeare wrote poetry…” Kobe played basketball in such a way, “…that the host of heaven and earth [had] to pause and say, “Here lived a great [basketball player], who [played] his job well.”

From NBA championship rings to Oscar and Emmy award wins, he succeeded in everything he set his heart, mind and time to; he inspired you and me in the process. Kobe wanted to show us that if you worked hard and spent the time you could achieve anything.

As I’ve been working through my feelings, a close friend said to me, “Oh, he’s like a friend’s son you heard stories about while he grew up,” because as so many reporters and journalist have pointed out, Kobe was a teenager who became a man in front of our eyes.

We’ve seen his highs and lows through the media and we’ve cared. This loss has made the whole world want to come to a halt. Kobe was a “Fresh Prince” from Philly, who sat on his throne in L.A, draped in gold and royal purple cloth reppin’ the Lakers as they reigned over the NBA. He married a beautiful, strong Latina woman with whom he had four princesses.

This was a fairy tale straight out of the Disney vault. I saw a doting husband and “girl-dad,” who sought to empower his princesses. I saw images of these young minds getting the opportunity to meet women who were champions in their fields; Misty Copeland, Oprah Winfrey, the American Women’s National Soccer and UCONN women’s basketball teams, to name a few.

Having grown up as an only girl with two brothers and a chauvinistic Latino dad, I was engulfed in admiration. What he was doing for a whole generation of women through coaching and mentoring was remarkable, but unfortunately, all fairy tales end and this one ended abruptly.

People like me, who are sports fanatics and have had an athlete as their hero, can only begin to imagine what the Kobe Generation is going through. An entire generation has lost their Michael Jordan or their Wayne Gretzky, their Bill Russell or LeBron James.

More from Lake Show Life

Each of us, who have ever loved a sport, have our own version of Kobe. The key distinguishing factor is, they have not been tragically taken from us, far too soon. Our real-life hero “girl-dad” didn’t have a happily ever after, even though once upon a time he scored 81 points against the Raptors and 60 points during his final NBA game.

I was looking forward to Kobe’s Hall of Fame induction. I was wanting to see who would be doing the presenting (MJ)? I was ready to hear a great speech from Kobe because you and I both know it would have been meaningful and full of life lessons. I have been hoping he had something prepared and it would serve as a last seed of inspiration for all of us.

Kobe Generation, much like the legends of Rome’s favorite gladiators are still talked about today, Kobe will be remembered long after our generation has perished. A statue in his honor, I’m sure, will be erected.

We will visit it just as we visit the Colosseum in Rome, statues of David in Florence and Michael Jordan in Chicago. Kobe will be an immortal legend long after we are gone and generations after us have their new heroes. Kobe’s longevity will be apparent because his 41 year moment here on earth was spent making all the right calculated “mamba” moves required to do so.

I’m sorry for our loss, but we must carry on and remember this: we were alive to witness and learn from the phenomenon that was Kobe Bryant.

Next. Kobe Bryant's Best Game Against Every NBA Team. dark

With the sincerest of sympathies,

Adriana Rubio