Originally written August 16, 2014 on Lakerholicz.com:
When Kobe Bryant first came into the league, he was a young player with a lot of skill on the court, but not so much when the final buzzer sounded and he stepped off it. For years, Bryant was branded a “loner” and usually stayed separate from the rest of his teammates. However, as Bryant grew older and matured as both a player and a person, the eventual five-time NBA champion began to understand how important it was to interact with his teammates. By doing so, Bryant discovered that he could raise the level of play of his peers – he made his teammates better. One of the things Bryant has really revelled in over the past five-to-ten years is taking on a mentorship role with some of the younger players in the league. From young guys such as Ronny Turiaf, Shannon Brown and Trevor Ariza, Bryant has taken talented prospects under his wing and, in turn, helped them improve as players during their tenure in the City of Angels. However, it isn’t just his Los Angeles Lakers teammates who Bryant looks out for. In the following excerpt from SLAM Magazine’s recent interview with Anthony Davis, the Kentucky product revealed that Bryant took the rookie under his wing at the 2012 Olympics in London: Before he suited up for a single NBA game, Davis was a member of the 2012 Gold- winning USA Olympic team, earning the role as the token up-and-comer on a roster laden with established names like Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Chris Paul. He says he kept his ears open during the experience, soaking in knowledge wherever he could find it. “I picked all of their brains,” he says. “Kobe took me under his wing and told me, You’re gonna be fine, just keep working. I was hanging out with him a lot, just trying to see who Kobe is and why he is Kobe. I learned a lot from him. I learned a lot from all of those guys. Those guys just told me to go out there and be yourself. Have fun.” This is just one example of how Bryant has grown as a leader over the years and how the “bad teammate” stuff really just is a load of nonsense. Time and time again, stories have surfaced about how the Black Mamba has helped numerous players throughout the league over the years – Jodie Meeks recently gave a shout out to Kobe for helping him during his time in L.A. – though many of Kobe’s mentoring sessions go unreported because this sort of thing is happening all the time. .bottom-of-post-responsive { width: 300px; height: 250px; } @media(min-width: 500px) { .bottom-of-post-responsive { width: 300px; height: 250px; } } @media(min-width: 800px) { .bottom-of-post-responsive { width: 336px; height: 280px; } } The post Anthony Davis on Kobe Bryant: “[He] took me under his wing” appeared first on Lakerholicz.com.

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