Kobe Bryant is remembered as a Los Angeles Lakers legend. He was a terrific player who knew how to win championships. In fact, Chicago Sky rookie Angel Reese immediately thought of Kobe and Shaquille O'Neal's dynasty with the Lakers after receiving the opportunity to hold the Larry O'Brien Trophy.

“What's up Larry (Larry O'Brien Trophy), nice to meet you. When I hold Larry it reminds me of Kobe Bryant. Kobe and Shaq playing together, winning championships together,” Reese said. “So cool being able to see my reflection and all the great teams and great players that have played on all these teams. It's so cool, I love this. Hopefully one day I can get my own WNBA championship.”

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Kobe Bryant inspired an entire generation. He is still consistently honored and remembered today. Reese clearly has appreciation for the late Lakers legend.

Angel Reese, meanwhile, emerged as a star while playing with LSU women's basketball before entering the 2024 WNBA Draft. Reese and other rookies such as Caitlin Clark, Kamilla Cardoso, and Cameron Brink have helped to bring even more popularity to the WNBA.

Angel Reese's start to WNBA career

Chicago Sky forward Angel Reese (5) and Chicago Sky guard Marina Mabrey (4) react during the second half against the Dallas Wings at College Park Center.
Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The Sky were defeated by the Dallas Wings 87-79 in Reese's WNBA regular season debut. Chicago rebounded with an 83-74 win over Dallas in the second game of the season.

“I think everybody just came out with energy, did all the little things…blocks, steals, boxed out. Everybody did what they needed to do to get the win,” Reese said after the Sky's victory, via Christopher Smith of ClutchPoints. “Even though I'm young, I know I bring a lot of energy to this team. My energy is contagious, and I just try to boost everybody up as much as I can.”

Through two games, Reese is averaging 11.5 points per outing on 34.8 percent field goal shooting. She is also recording 8.5 rebounds per game. Of course, it is a small sample size. Nevertheless, Reese has already displayed signs of star potential at the WNBA level.

The way Reese has handled the pressure has been quite impressive as well. Reese and Clark became not just basketball stars in college, but true celebrities. They have helped to increase viewership in both women's college basketball and the WNBA.

They have both dealt with enormous expectations as a result. However, Reese and Clark have continued to work hard while tuning out the noise.

Perhaps seeing the Larry O'Brien Trophy in person will further inspire Angel Reese on the floor moving forward with the Sky. Reese even said that she is hoping to win a WNBA championship someday.

For now, Reese and the Sky will focus on preparing for their third game of the WNBA season. That contest will be a challenge, though, as Chicago will play the 4-0 New York Liberty on the road. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 PM EST in New York.