By: D’Anthony Monet, Z1059
The tragic death of NBA Superstar and global sports icon Kobe Bryant, has sent shockwaves throughout the entire country and the world-at-large. Kobe perished in a horrific helicopter crash in Calabasas, California on Sunday, January 26th, along with his thirteen-year-old daughter Gianna and seven other precious souls. At first, it all seemed surreal, as though it was some kind of troll on the information superhighway. However, when the reality of the situation was verified, that’s when the so-called Kobe Effect began to set in.
Kobe was someone we all felt that we knew, so the feeling was as if we had lost a close relative, an uncle or a brother. Most of us can remember the exploits of Kobe and his tremendous success on the basketball court. He was the heir-apparent to Michael Jordan, and fit into that role with a take no prisoner attitude. One thing is clear, you didn’t have to be a basketball super-fan or live in LA to feel the impact of Kobe Bryant. His accomplishments speak for themselves, 5-time NBA Champion, 2-time Olympian, 4-time All-Star MVP, Academy-Award winner (spoken-word), Celebrity Product-Endorser; need I say more? In a way, we all would like to experience just a sliver of the success that he did in his 41 years.
Now it seems that his impact on death will be even bigger than his achievements in life. There are already plans for Kobe to be inducted posthumously into the 2020 class of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Several NBA franchises immediately retired both of Kobe’s jersey numbers, 8 and 24. Nike immediately sold out of all Kobe merchandise, and there’s talk through the form of a petition of some 800,000 signatures, to adopt Kobe’s image as the new logo of the NBA. Twenty years with the LA Lakers was just a snap-shot in time; the Kobe effect will live on in perpetuity. In case you didn’t know, that means forever. Rumble, Black Mamba, Rumble.