Dear Kobe Bryant,
It’s been quite a while since my last post on Lakerholicz.com. Since your injury last season, it has been extremely tough for me to share my thoughts with our readers. Whenever I would finally declare that it was time for me to write, it felt as if Dikembe Mutombo’s hand would reach out of my computer screen and swat away any word that I attempted to type. For weeks, I would ignore my usual readers asking me where have I been as my absence became embarrassingly noticeable.
Today I realized that this writer’s block of mine had very much to do with your time away from the game as you took time to recover from your injury. The moment that I saw a picture of you participating in a scrimmage at practice, I immediately knew that I would finally be able to defeat this problem of mine. I realized that your performance on the court is what enables me to formulate my thoughts through written words. The things that you have accomplished in your career are the reasons for some of my most popular writings like the Top 5 Reasons Why People Hate Kobe Bryant and Shaq Needed Kobe Too. In fact, the reason why I am even able to write for this website is because I emailed Ross Pickering (Lakerholicz.com creator) a blog that I wrote explaining how you are the reason why I am an NBA fan today.
I say all of that to say this: Just like you are back, so am I and I’ve been wanting to express how much Laker fans all over the world have missed you. The game of basketball just isn’t the same without the effort, courage, leadership, and absolute tenacity that you display every single time that you step foot on the court.
As much as we love Coach Kobe, we miss the in-game leader who can be visibly seen explaining plays to teammates immediately before they’re executed beautifully. We miss you relentlessly challenging your teammates to maximize their potential, while also supporting them through their struggles.
We miss how you never back down from any challenge or trash talk. Watching an “old” guy like you confidently bet a young player like Kyrie Irving that you would defeat him one-on-one gives fuel to the fire of Laker fans. Being able to see you do things like drop 38 points and add 12 rebounds on a team whose owner suggested that the Lakers amnesty you is absolutely incredible.
We miss your extremely crazy shot choices that in my eyes exemplify your competiveness that is in a league of its own and will to win. It’s been a while since we screamed at the television “KOBE NOOOOOOO!” and then quietly said “oh” to ourselves as you make some of the most ridiculous shots from some of the most ridiculous places on the court.
We miss the Black Mamba and that extremely intimidating face that you make after nailing clutch shot after clutch shot. We can’t wait to see you make those routinely huge shots in the middle of the fourth quarter that doesn’t show up on Sportscenter as a “game winner.” We also can’t wait to see the ball in your hands for the final shot of a tied ball game. Who better to have the ball than the Black Mamba?
Last, but not least, we miss you proving the doubters wrong as you have done since the day you entered the league. They said that you should have gone to college because you were too young for the NBA. You proved them wrong by becoming a three time NBA Champion by the age of 23. They then said that you couldn’t do it without Shaq. You proved them wrong again by making it to the finals three straight years and winning two without him on your team. They then called you old and said that your time was up. Since the “old” attachment to your name, you’ve done things like become an All-Star game MVP in a game filled with the best young talent that the NBA has to offer and compete yearly for the NBA’s scoring title.
Now they doubt that you’ll be the same after this injury. They’re stating that there are 24 players in the NBA that are better than you. They’re predicting that your team will finish in 12th place of the Western Conference at the end of the season.
Prove them wrong again Kobe. Be the man that we’ve watched bounce back from numerous injuries throughout his entire career. Get on that court and do the things that influence every single word that I write.
Welcome back Kobe Bryant! We’ve missed you!
This was an article by Deshaun Sheppard. You can follow him on Twitter here: @WOLF_CHUKI