Kobe Bryant completely ignored Chris Rock when on the sidelines during an NBA Finals game in 2010 against the Boston Celtics.
When it comes to athletes with laser focuses while in-game, Kobe Bryant has to be mentioned at some point or the other. The 5x champ trademarked the ‘Mamba Mentality’ phrase that he himself coined to describe the way he felt when he was locked into any moment during bout against any team.
Many players have called it ‘being in the zone’; a state of mind that blocks out any unnecessary distractions and grants the athlete the ability to solely focus on the task ahead. This task is of course, winning the game for their team.
Kobe Bryant was synonymous with this state of mind as he had ripped the hearts out of nearly every single team in the NBA at some point in his career. Whether it was the Toronto Raptors on the night he had 81 points against them or the time he hit dagger after dagger against the TrailBlazers in the early 2000s, Kobe knew no limit to how well he could perform when the pressure was at its peak.
Kobe Bryant says he does not remember a single word Chris Rock had uttered to him.
The Los Angeles Lakers have an incredible lineup of star-studded celebrities who continually show their support for the purple and gold. Everyone from Snoop Dogg to Jack Nicholson showed up to cheer Kobe Bryant and the Lakers on. Legendary comedian Chris Rock was present during the 2010 NBA Finals and of course, sat courtside.
During a timeout in one of the games during these Finals, Kobe had taken to the sidelines to rest up before entering the game once again. Chris Rock used this as an opportunity to spurt out a few jokes towards the then 4x champ. In a moment of hilarity that remains iconic to this day, Kobe Bryant looked dead ahead with no sign of any emotion on his face as Rock went on talking.
This Kobe moment never gets old, Mamba Mentality. 🐍
— Hoop Central (@TheHoopCentral) June 2, 2021
Years later, we come to find out that Bryant was so locked in that he did not remember a single moment from that interaction taking place. “I don’t even hear him. It’s not even an acknowledgement and he’s right in my ear.”
It’s safe to say that being locked in for Kobe Bryant was something that he was accustomed to and Chris Rock should’ve known to not try to bring him back out of the zone.