KOBE Bryant is used to challenging the NBA’s elite and just because he is retired doesn’t mean he has stopped doing so. After his video on Twitter last week Kobe took the chance to challenge some NBA athletes, as well as others from different sports to see if they have the ‘Mamba Mentality’.
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NIKE Basketball released a video on Twitter on ‘Kobe Day’ (August 24th) teasing his new sneakers. Since then sports personalities across the globe have called upon Kobe for him to issue them a challenge.
OF course, Bryant responded by firing out five challenges straight off the bat. His first targets were NBA orientated calling upon Isaiah Thomas to make the All-NBA first team and DeMar DeRozan to go off the court and rekindle a friendship from his youth in Compton. Next, he hit up Kendrick Lamar (you know because he’s Kobe and he can do that shit) and requested that he dabble in some charity work and revolutionize the music program at Centennial High School. He went back to athletes and requested 6x Olympic gold medalist Allyson Felix to coach the sprinters at the upcoming Special Olympics. Richard Sherman, the cornerback for the Seattle Seahawks was the next one in the firing line, with Bryant challenging him to record 11 picks and break the single season franchise interception record at Seattle in season 2017. His final two tests were issued to up and coming NBA All-Stars John Wall and Giannis Antetokounmpo after they asked him to extend his challenges and include them. Wall was tasked with making the All-Defense first team and Antetokounmpo was challenged to claim the highest individual honour in the NBA and win the MVP award this season.
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MOST of the athletes Kobe called out have some affiliation with Nike, so it makes sense that he reached out to those specific people, but it is somewhat strange. The on court challenges for Thomas, Wall and Antetokounmpo make sense, but the Kendrick and DeRozan call outs are…ummm…unique. Thomas might find it difficult to make the first All-NBA team playing alongside LeBron James, given the elite depth at point guard too. The off-court tasks for DeMar DeRozan and Kendrick Lamar seem straight forward and Fox has already accepted her’s via Twitter.
RICHARD Sherman has twice recorded eight picks in a season, so that isn’t impossible to see him claim three more. Wall has improved his defense annually and was named to the All-Defense third team last year so he could give the first team a red hot crack. Antetokounmpo is being hailed as the next future superstar in the NBA and took a huge leap last season to become an All-Star. It would take some serious doing, but of all the young stars in today’s league, Antetokounmpo would be the odds on favourite to claim an MVP award. We aren’t sure if Kobe will hand out any other challenges yet, but it will be interesting to see how the athletes respond to these challenges and if any of them can actually pull off the tasks in front of them.
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