National Basketball Association (NBA) has witnessed some of the great basketball franchises over the years. Los Angeles Lakers are one of the best franchises in the journey of the NBA. From 1947, they have achieved 17 championship trophies. This achievement comes with the dedication of the players and coaches who worked with the Lakers.
Though the Lakers have worked with some great players, it is tough to identify only one player as the best Lakers of all time. Yet considering the performance and other facts, we have selected one as the greatest Laker player.
- Who is the greatest Lakers of all time?
- Professional Career
- 1996 NBA draft
- Adjusting to the NBA (1996-1999)
- Coming up short (2002-2004)
- Scoring records and playoff upsets (2004–2007)
- Back on top (2007-2010)
- Injury-plagued years (2010–2015)
- The final season (2015–2016)
- Kobe Bryant net worth at death
- Facts to Know
- Final Speech
Who is the greatest Lakers of all time?
Undoubtedly, Kobe Bryant is the greatest Laker of all time in all aspects. Bryant spent 20 years of his entire NBA journey with the Lakers as a shooting guard. He belongs to a sports family as his father, Joe Bryant, was also a former NBA player. He was also the nephew of a former NBA player John “Chubby” Cox, from his maternal side.
Basketball had a great influence on Bryant’s childhood as he saw the game close in his family. Kobe started playing basketball at the age of three. Los Angeles Lakers become his favorite team while growing up. He also turns into a skilled basketball player while being in high school.
1996 NBA draft
After completing his graduation, Kobe Bryant applied for the NBA draft. He was selected for the team Charlotte Hornets, and later they traded Bryant to the Lakers. He was only 17 years old while signing the contract with the Lakers; that’s why his parents signed the contract on his behalf. It was a three-year rookie contract of $3.5 million.
Adjusting to the NBA (1996-1999)
Bryant’s brilliant performance in the Summer Pro league caught the attention of Lakers coach Del Harris. Eventually, he was traded to the Lakers for his playing quality. In 1998-99, he confirmed a six years contract extension of $70 million, which keeps him in the franchise till 2003-4 sessions.
Bryant got more benefited when Phil Jackson joined as a coach for the Lakers in 1999. He became the premier shooting guard and participated in several events like All-NBA, All-Star, and All-Defensive teams. In the final of 2002, he scored a quarter of the whole team’s score as 26.8 points, 51.4% shooting, 5.8 rebounds, and 5.3 assists per game.
Coming up short (2002-2004)
In 2003, Bryant was again voted as the All-NBA and All-Defensive First Teams and became third place in voting for the MVP award. He got an average score of 30 points per game, making a historic run. Again, he averaged a score of 6.9 rebounds, 5.9 assists, and 2.2 steals per game. It was all his career-highs.
Scoring records and playoff upsets (2004–2007)
With a lot of success, Bryant’s image got a bit damaged with his “un-coachable” behavior. The performance of the franchise got a bit low also.
Back on top (2007-2010)
These years were a bit good for Bryant. The Los Angeles Lakers regained the NBA championship title in 2009 and 2010. Again, he resigned the contract with the Lakers and extended it for three years, which was worth $87 million.
Injury-plagued years (2010–2015)
These years were a little controversial with the payment Bryant received. Where some argue that Bryant should take less from the team; on the other hand, fans argued that being an excellent player, Bryant should be paid more. On January 21, 2015, Bryant took a rest from 8-16 games due to a rotator cuff tear in his right shoulder.
The final season (2015–2016)
After recovering from the injury, Bryant continued playing and announced his retirement news by The Players’ Tribune on November 29, 2015.
Kobe Bryant net worth at death
The legendary player Kobe Bryant and his daughter died in a helicopter crash. Kobe Bryant’s net worth at death was worth $600 million.
Facts to Know
1. How many MVPS does KOBE BRYANT have?
Kobe has won a total of 3 MVPS during his glorious career.
2. How many regular season MVP does KOBE BRYANT have?
Kobe has won 1 regular season MVP award for his 2007-08 season performance with 28.3 points.
3. How many NBA Final MVPS does Kobe Bryant have?
Kobe has won 2 NBA final MVPs for his performance for Los Angeles Lakers in 2008-09 and 2009-10 season.
4. How many NBA Championships did Kobe Win?
During his career, Kobe Bryant won 5 NBA Championships for the Lakers in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2009 and 2010.
5. How many NBA All Star Game did Kobe Play?
Though Kobe was in the squad for 18 NBA All-Star teams, he played only 15.
6. How many Olympic Gold Medal did Kobe Win?
Kobe Bryant won 2 Summer Olympic gold medals for USA National Basketball Team in 2008 and 2012.
Late Kobe Bryant deserves to be known as the best Lakers player of all time. Within his 20 years long journey with the Lakers, he won the 18-time All-Star and five Hall of Fame titles. He was selected for two NBA Finals MVPs, one regular-season MVP, and the team’s all-time scoring leader. One fact that cannot be ignored is that he was constant with the franchise in all situations. So, undoubtedly, he deserves to be the best Lakers of all time.