Kobe Bryant was one of the best basketball players the sport has ever seen, and there are a number of lessons we can learn from his Mamba Mentality. For Kobe, life was always bigger than basketball. Here are the lessons I’ve learned that every person should follow day in and day out.
But first to set the stage, let’s take a look back at my favorite Kobe game of all time.
The first thing that always stood out to me when I was watching Kobe was his confidence in himself. He always wanted the ball in his hands, and he always wanted to be the one shooting the most important shots. He once famously said, “I would rather go 0-30 before I go 0-9.” If you’re not confident in yourself, then who can be? Be willing to take chances and believe in yourself.
- Work Ethic
You can’t start a conversation about Kobe without talking about his relentless work ethic. This man would spend hours and hours in the gym. Early in the morning when everyone else was sleeping, he was working on his craft. Talent will only get you so far. Hard work and dedication can lead you down the path of success.
- Enjoy the Process
Remember a strong foundation is never built in a day. It takes time, but it also takes a person who is passionate about what they do. Kobe genuinely loved the grind because he always thought there was room to improve. The day to day grind can take a toll on some people, but the ones who embrace the process usually reach their goals.
- Be Detail Oriented
As Bryant started aging, he knew that he couldn’t rely on his athleticism as much like when he was younger. So, he started focusing more on his footwork and the X’s and O’s. Never underestimate what the small details can do for you. They can begin to add up quick. It can be the difference between being a great player and a legend.
- Set high standards
Don’t be afraid to set high standards for yourself. This sets the path, so you know where you want to go and what it will take. Kobe knew what his expectations were for himself and this helped him block out all the noise. The opinion of others shouldn’t impact you when your standards are already high. Keep your head down and keep working!
- Mamba Mindset
Kobe always wanted to go out there and be the best. His thought process was if someone else could do it, so could he. The special part about Bryant’s mindset was how obsessive he would become about a certain thing. He tended to model his game after the greats that came before him. Modeling yourself after someone that you idealize can be a great idea. You may learn a new habit or skill that takes your “game” to the next level.
As Kobe grew older, he became known more as being a family man. It was so heartbreaking to hear that Bryant passed away with his daughter during the accident. He described her as being a daddy’s girl. They shared the bond of loving basketball and were even seen at an NBA game sitting courtside a week before the accident. Never take family for granted. They are the people that love you the most and will always be there for you through it all.
- You Can’t Play Sports Forever, Find Something You Love
For Kobe, this was writing children’s books and making a short film that won an Oscar. Even though Kobe was done with his basketball career, he still had so much planned, and that was why his death was so sad. Find something that you love to do outside your job. Having a hobby you enjoy can keep some fun in your life and help avoid burnouts.
25. Jabari Parker (age 23)
24. Trae Young (age 20)
23. Brandon Ingram (age 21)
22. Andrew Wiggins (age 23)
21. Domantas Sabonis (age 22)
Out of the five guys listed here, Trae Young and Domantas Sabonis probably have the highest upside, and have a chance to climb these ranks within the next couple years. Brandon Ingram flashes potential at times, but is wildly inconsistent and hasn’t developed as well as expected for year 3. As for Wiggins, and Parker, both are over-paid volume scorers who shoot poorly from deep and consistently play bad defense.
20. Julius Randle (age 24)
19. Myles Turner (age 22)
18. Jaylen Brown (age 22)
17. Lauri Markannen (age 21)
16. Kyle Kuzma (age 23)
Kuzma continues to build upon an impressive rookie season upping his ppg to 19.1 as the second option on the Lakers. Jaylen Brown and Myles Turner both play outstanding defense, but have taken backseat roles on offense within their respective teams. Markannen has been extremely efficient on offense for a Bulls team lacking any scoring while Randle has been a revelation since signing with New Orleans, averaging 20ppg and 9.2rpg for the year.
15. Jamal Murray (age 21)
14. DeAndre Ayton (age 20)
13. D’Angelo Russell (age 22)
12. Clint Capela (age 24)
11. Jayson Tatum (age 20)
Tatum is as smooth of a scorer as there is in the NBA and will continue to rise up this list. There probably isn’t another center better suited for the Houston Rockets than Clint Capela, who excels on the boards and finishing lobs. Russell has only gotten better since leaving the Lakers. Ayton has been a bright spot on an awful Suns squad, showcasing versatility on the offensive end. Murray has played a huge role in the success the Nuggets have been having this year.
10. DeAaron Fox (age 21)
Fox has done the impossible by making the Sacramento Kings playoff contenders for the first time in 12 years. Fox has been shooting 46% from the field and 36.4% from deep while averaging 17.2ppg and 7.1apg. Not only has Fox been extremely efficient, he also leads one of the most fun offenses to watch in the league. The progression of Buddy Hield and Fox as a duo is something to keep your eye on going forward.
9. Donavan Mitchell (age 22)
Mitchell has built on a phenomenal rookie campaign following some early season struggles. He’s a great two-way player with a chance to have a HOF career. These first two years are eerily similar to Dwayne Wade’s early career.
8. Kristaps Porzingis (age 23)
Porzingis (when healthy) is among the most skilled players in the league. At 7’2 he is extremely long but has guard-like skills. His ability to shoot from deep makes him nearly impossible to guard. There still remains a question of durability when it comes to his long-term health.
7. Devin Booker (age 22)
Devin Booker has developed at a much faster rate than most expected. He’s currently averaging 25ppg and 6.7apg. While his scoring has been great, it hasn’t translated into wins for Phoenix. Expect Booker and Ayton to develop into a great duo within the next couple years.
6. Ben Simmons (age 22)
Ben Simmons recently made his first all star game, and it’s not hard to see why when you look at his averages of 16.7ppg, 8apg, and 9.2rpg. Despite not having a jumpshot, he’s been very effective because he has such a versatile game. I’m not convinced Simmons ever develops a jumpshot and it probably will hinder him in today’s NBA. Regardless, Simmons is a generational talent as a 6’10 point guard with exceptional court vision.
5. Luka Doncic (age 19)
Doncic has been the most impressive rookie since LeBron James. His step-back 3’s in clutch moments are unreal for a guy that’s 19. One of the most exciting players in the league already, expect Doncic to develop into a great.
4. Karl Anthony Towns (age 23)
Karl Anthony Towns puts up ridiculous stats and is as skilled a post as there is in the league. No one has ever denied how talented Towns is, but it’s fair to wonder if any other star has as empty stats as he does. Going forward, Towns will have to prove he can lead a team to be contenders, otherwise, he’s likely to fall on this list.
3. Nikola Jokic (age 23)
Jokic may end up being the best passing center of all time as he averages 7.7apg. His game is really unconventional with a strange looking jumpshot and below average athleticism, but it sure does work well. Denver currently has the second best record in the West and Jokic is the biggest reason why.
2. Joel Embiid (age 24)
Embiid doesn’t have any weaknesses in his game. He’s very skilled and physically dominant in the post. Yet, he can also run the floor like a deer. Not to mention, he’s a pretty good defensive center. It’s not hard to envision Embiid having a hall of fame career, with a chance at being one of the great centers to have played.
1. Giannis Antetokounmpo (age 24)
The Greek Freak is most likely to be the face of the NBA after LeBron’s run is over. He’s electrifying in every sense of the word and continues to get better. The Milwaukee Bucks have become title contenders through the dominance of Giannis and there’s no reason they can’t sustain it for the next 10 years.
We have all heard how much participating in sports teaches us: sportsmanship, hard work, dedication, the list goes on and on. I certainly learned a lot from my days on the volleyball court, but working in athletics has taught me even more.
1. Team Work Makes the Dream Work
I honestly have no idea what I would do without my co-workers! We are much stronger together than we are apart. We all have different strengths and weaknesses, but together there is nothing we cannot tackle (pun intended).
2. Have Tough Skin; it is Impossible to Make Everyone Happy
This lesson may have been the hardest lesson for me to learn, and if I’m honest, it is still a work in progress. Do not take every rude Facebook comment to heart; you will drive yourself crazy!
3. Life is Too Short to Have a Job You Don’t Enjoy
The average person spends over ten years of their life working! Make sure you enjoy what you are doing!
4. Fans are Crazy (But we Love Them)
Sports fans take sports VERY seriously, and it is their dedication that makes our jobs fun and exciting! However, fans are also very demanding! 1,000 things could go right during a game, and one could go wrong, and they still focus on the one wrong! Your team lost? Get ready for comments pointing out every mistake of the game; they say it all! Which leads me to…
5. No One Is Perfect
Mistakes, bad play calls, and off games are bound to happen! It is important to realize that coaches, players, and workers are all humans, and make mistakes just like anyone else!
6. Detail Counts
I can tell if a logo is the wrong shade of maroon instantly! Some people may think I am crazy, but details are crucial! Small details add up to make a huge difference.
7. Own It
Don’t know how to do something? Instead of being scared to make a mistake just dive in, get information, and own your decisions!
8. Life isn’t Always Glamourous
Sometimes you have to carry tables, hand out coupons, or clean out a closet; that’s life. Do everything with a positive attitude!
Thank you for reading! Please feel free to comment, and share!
There have been a bunch of great looking jerseys in NBA history, and unfortunately there have been plenty that are less than pleasant. Here is my list of the top 7 ugliest NBA jerseys. Let me know what you think!
7 Golden State Warriors 2012
I won’t lie, I think all of the sleeved jerseys in the NBA are just hideous. But out of all of them, this orange one to go along with the pin stripe shorts are just the worst of the bunch. With how well the Warriors play, this jersey seems to misrepresent them.
6 Charlotte Bobcats 2007
This jersey was the terrible idea of some Charlotte designer that went along with their “NASCAR Night” in ’07. The finish line checkers on the sides of the jersey do not mesh well with the pin stripe design of the rest of the jersey. While Charlotte was named the Bobcats, they only had a winning record 2 years out of the total 10 years, this jersey kind of fits with the ugliness during that decade for them.
5 Sacramento Kings 2005
The Kings made gold and purple jerseys in ’05 as alternate uniforms, seemingly forgetting about that powerhouse Los Angeles team to the south. These were only used for two seasons, which in my opinion, is two seasons too many.
4 Cleveland Cavaliers 1994
The stripe going across this jersey just doesn’t look right, not to mention that the colors have nothing to do with the Cavaliers logo or primary colors. Even the word “Cleveland” looks ugly with the red font. Compared to today’s Cavs jerseys, I’m glad these will not be making a comeback any time soon.
3 Dallas Mavericks 2001
This metallic looking jersey was only used for one game in the ’01 season before owner Mark Cuban gave them the boot. I honestly can’t blame him because these things just look downright awful. They almost look like a shiny trash bag, and that’s where they belong; in the trash.
2 Los Angeles Clippers 2006
This jersey is a throwback to their days as the Buffalo Braves. It’s hard to make an orange jersey look good and the weird stripes on this one just didn’t do it. The “B” also looks totally out of place, similar to the stripes. Clippers fans weren’t too proud of these jerseys and were happy to see them go after only two seasons of being in use.
1 Milwaukee Bucks 1995
There are a bunch of ugly Milwaukee jerseys that I could have chosen because most of them look bad, but I think you can tell why I chose this one! There are so many things wrong with this jersey, so let me start with the obvious; the deer. Damn this thing looks pissed and awful, and it takes up basically half of the uniform! Next let’s look at the primary color; that may very well be the worst looking green I have ever seen. Now the text; with the faded white to purple lettering, it just tops off what was already an ugly jersey.