Most young stars grew up watching Kobe Bryant play, thinking of him as the Michael Jordan of their generation and following him through a quite successful career that’s a lock to end with him as a Hall of Fame inductee.
Kobe made his way to 5 NBA Championships but most importantly, he implemented a mindset just a handful of ballers wind up developing and living up to the fearless and deadly Mamba Mentality.
Besides being a dreadful scorer, Kobe was one of the most hard-nosed competitors night in and night out, regardless of if he was playing in the NBA Finals or holding onto a 25 point lead against subpar teams.
Moreover, that’s one of the things that has made Kobe’s legacy so great, and young stars really look up to that kind of mentorship, always trying to replicate that kind of behavior to try and lead their teams to success. That’s why we’re going to let you know about the top 5 young players that should definitely work out with Kobe during the summer.
5. Giannis Antetokounmpo
Giannis Antetokounmpo is the first guy on this list because he actually stated to the media that he was keen to try and reach Kobe to see if he could work out during the summer, making the most of his All-Star presence this weekend in the Staples Center.
The Greek Freak is already an MVP caliber player and he’s also won the Most Improved Player award, but his restless work ethic and constant desire to get better makes him push himself over the edge on a nightly basis. Also, if Kobe can help him improve his shooting stroke, he’s going to be the best player in the world in no time.
4. Andrew Wiggins
Andrew Wiggins entered the league with a lot of praise as a future two-way star but truth to be told, he’s kind of stalled and has taken a major step back with the surge of Karl Anthony-Towns and Jimmy Butler’s arrival to Minneapolis.
Still, what Wiggins needs to work with Kobe the most isn’t his game, but his mentality, as he’s lacked the courage to try and lead his team through key stretches of the games and seasons, and he tends to disappear come clutch time, one of the biggest question marks over his head during his high school and NCAA tenures.
3. Donovan Mitchell
Donovan Mitchell and Kobe Bryant actually have a lot in common, as both of them were late lottery sleepers in the NBA Draft, both were major steals and both were almost immediately dealt by the team that drafted them in the first place.
Mitchell has taken the league for assault and has even become the frontrunner to win the Rookie of the Year accolade, looking like a veteran and almost single-handedly carrying the Utah Jazz’ offense to the postseason, and getting a page or two out of the Bryant playbook would only make him a scarier scorer going forward.
2. Devin Booker
Devin Booker is already posting All-Star caliber numbers and is a lock to lead the league in scoring anytime soon, being one of the most gifted offensive young men the league has seen over the last decade, and with a lot of room for improvement.
Also, Booker has the kind of determination to single-handedly lead a young Phoenix Suns team that’s just going to get better with time. On a side note, he’s already had some Kobe-like performances, like his absurd 70 point outing against the Boston Celtics, just 11 points behind Bryant’s epic performance vs Toronto.
1. Kyrie Irving
Kyrie Irving and Kobe have had nothing but words of respect for each other, and Kyrie has even made a couple of shoutouts to the Mamba with his signature sneakers from time to time, so the possibility of them working out together is actually pretty real.
There are few scorers in the league as gifted as Uncle Drew, and he’s already proven that he’s never scared to take the big shot when it matters the most. Also, wouldn’t it be just beautiful to see Kobe helping Kyrie try and beat LeBron James?