There were umpteen similarities between Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan and their careers. The two shared a wonderful relationship.
There is no doubt that the Black Mamba was the closest thing to Michael Jordan. Both the 6’6 guards had a lot common between them when it came to basketball greatness.
Kobe has on several occasions admitted that he had stolen a lot of moves from the Bulls legend. The Lakers superstar was never intimidated by MJ, and that is what made their relationship great.
The two basketball icons exhibited identical moves on the NBA hardwood and had similar athleticism. Both Kobe and Jordan were students of the game and had an incredible work ethic. The two legends also 3-peated under the same coach, Phil Jackson.
Kobe considered MJ as his elder brother and mentor. MJ too played an active role in the behind-the-scenes of Kobe’s career, whether it was recommending his personal trainer Tim Grover or helping him in his post-up moves, footwork, and triangle offense.
Michael Jordan talks about his close relationship with the late Kobe Bryant at the Staples Center
Kobe’s tragic death had shaken the entire world, and MJ was no different. During his memorial at the Staples Center, Jordan took a walk down memory lane, sharing various instances of their relationship.
“Maybe it surprised people that Kobe and I were very close friends,” Jordan began. “But we were very close friends.”
An emotional MJ couldn’t help but break down but continued, “The relationship began, with Bryant as an annoying little brother, who “for whatever reason, always tends to get in your stuff. Your closet, your shoes, everything. It was a nuisance if I can say that word. But that nuisance turned into love over a period of time.”
He added, “He used to call me, text me 11:30, 2:30, 3 in the morning,” Jordan said. “At first, it was an aggravation, but then it turned into a certain passion. This kid had passion like you would never know.”
One of the most impactful lines of Jordan’s speech was, “When Kobe Bryant died, a piece of me died,” he said. “I will live with the memories of knowing that I had a little brother that I tried to help in every way I could.”
Kobe and MJ kept a very low-key relationship away from the public eyes, so it was really special to see Jordan address Kobe as his younger brother. When it comes to the game-changers in NBA, one cannot forget to mention Kobe and Jordan in the conversation.