Kobe Bryant’s career stands as an extraordinary and a stupendous journey that has led him to achieve incredible success in the NBA. Besides all the laurels and accomplishments, there are some lesser known facts about Bryant that some are still unaware.
His basketball career has been molded by things both on and off the court.
Let’s have a look at seven fun facts about the All-Star who will undoubtedly go down as one of the most accomplished to ever embrace perseverance.
Eloquent in Italian
Bryant spent a part of his childhood in Italy, and he began learning Italian at age six in grade school.
Till date, he still speaks the language fluently, and he has used it to communicate with some of his teammates on the court. He showed a great deal of interest in soccer than basketball after school in Italy among his peers, so Bryant began to pick up the language rather quickly in an effort to play with the others.
Named After a Steak
Prior to his birth, Bryant’s parents Joe and Pamela came across Kobe beef on a restaurant menu, and they apparently loved the name so much that they found it appropriate to use it for the couple’s son.
Not something common, that someone is named after a piece of meat.
He Carried Brandy to His High School Prom
Most of us asked out a girlfriend or a lady friend to our high school prom, but Bryant decided to walk down the red carpet in emphatic fashion.
Bryant decided to take a popular music star. He showed up with R&B singer Brandy Norwood to his prom.
First Guard to Be Drafted Straight out of High School
Bryant made news when he was drafted out of Lower Merion High School with the No. 13 overall selection in 1996, and it’s because of more than just his age.
The only thing that went amiss with Bryant’s draft selection was from the Charlotte Hornets’ perspective, as the team traded his rights for Vlade Divac on draft day.
Kobe’s First Meeting With His Wife Vanessa
The two actually locked eyes back in 1999, when Vanessa was just a 17-year-old senior in high school.
At the time, she was serving as a background dancer in a music video. Besides checking up on The Eastsidaz shoot, Bryant was at the studio to record his own rap that never really launched off the ground.
Why Kobe Wore No. 8
Bryant sported the number 33 for the majority of his high school career, so why did he switch to No. 8 when he arrived in the NBA?
He wore the number while growing up and playing in Italy, and it is also a representation of the numbers he wore at the Adidas ABCD camp: one, four and three.
His Middle Name: Bean
Last, but certainly not least, Bryant’s middle name isn’t one that’s seen on a lot of birth certificates.
His parents chose the middle name Bean for Bryant, which more than likely came due to his father’s nickname of “Jellybean” that he earned during his playing days.