The forgotten Kobe Bryant game the day before he tore his Achilles
Los Angeles Lakers Kobe Bryant’s name is forever etched in the list of the greatest players to ever play the game of basketball. Known with the nicknames of “The Black Mamba” and “Mr. 81”, Kobe will be remembered as one of the best clutch players of all-time.
Before formally retiring in 2016, Kobe endured numerous injuries in his career and was constantly praised for his will to play through these injuries especially in playoff games. In April 12, 2013, Bryant suffered an Achilles tear injury, prompting him to miss the rest of the season. This could have also forced him to consider leaving the game as he announced his retirement two years after that unfortunate night.
However, most fans have forgotten a truly incredible performance he played against the Portland Trail Blazers just a game before he tore his Achilles. With the Lakers visiting the Blazers that night, Kobe put up 47 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists, 4 blocks and 3 steals in one of the best all-around performances of his celebrated 20-year career.
A redditor reminded people of this memorable performance.
Oh, did we forget to mention that he was already 34-years old that game? For a basketball player of that age, that is an incredible feat. Even as he approached the latter years of his career, Kobe’s numbers have been ridiculously steady. This could be a testament to Kobe’s excellent work ethic.
Jay Williams, a former NBA player, is a witness to the Mamba’s hard work. In an interview with Goalcast, Williams told a story of his encounter with Bryant.
“The game was at seven… this is the championship Lakers. I’m going to get there at 3:00, and I want to make sure I make 400 made shots before I go back into the room and then I sit in the sauna and get ready for the game. Who do I see? I see Kobe Bryant, already working out,” Williams says.
Kobe’s body of work is truly a model for young athletes. Today, Bryant still shows his expertise of the game by providing intensive analysis of players’ individual games through his exclusive show, “Detail.”