Kobe Bryant ‘knew he was really special’ at a young age, claims Jerry Colangelo
Colangelo remembered Bryant coming to Phoenix for a pre-draft workout in 1996 and just had a feeling Kobe was going to be something different.
“He just knew he was really special,” Jerry Colangelo told Duane Rankin of the Arizona Republic.
“No one could’ve predicted everything that’s happened, obviously, and the career that he had, but you had a strong feeling this guy was very, very special.”
Bryant, the best player in Lakers franchise history, tragically died on Jan. 26 at the age of 41 in a helicopter crash along with his daughter Gigi and seven others. It’s really sad that fans won’t get to hear the NBA icon speak at his Hall of Fame induction.
Bryant finished his Lakers career with averages of 25.0 points, 5.2 rebounds and 4.7 assists. He won five championships, two Finals MVPs, one regular-season MVP and two scoring titles.
Kobe is widely considered the second greatest shooting guard in NBA history after Michael Jordan.
The Charlotte Hornets drafted Kobe with the 13th overall pick in the 1996 Draft. The team, however, traded Bryant to the Lakers for Vlade Divac, and the rest is history.