Before tipoff on Monday night at the Time Warner Cable Arena, the Charlotte Hornets honored Kobe Bryant with a tribute video like many other teams around the NBA have this season when the Los Angeles Lakers come to town. After the tribute video, Hornets owner Michael Jordan left a message to Bryant congratulating him on an incredible career and wishing him luck for the future.
It’s no secret Jordan has played a significant role in turning Bryant into the player he is today. Kobe views Jordan as one of his mentors and credits the six-time NBA champion for helping him along the way during his NBA career that has spanned over almost two decades.
After the Lakers had fallen to the Hornets, Bryant was asked about Jordan’s message and what it meant to him via Time Warner Cable SportsNet:
“It was awesome. It was awesome.
“It was funny to see some of the reactions of my teammates. I’m sitting next to Julius Randle, and he goes, ‘Yo, that’s amazing!'”
The Lakers will face the Hornets once again on Jan. 31 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. Jordan will have one last opportunity to see Bryant against his team on the road if he chooses to be in attendance.
Following Kobe’s final game in Charlotte, the Lakers will travel north for a game Bryant has likely marked on his calendar since deciding to retire. Bryant and company will play their third and final game of this short road trip against the Boston Celtics, which will be his last game at TD Garden.
Bryant has had some epic battles in the past in Boston and has said the championship he won in 2010 against the Celtics is his favorite. It’ll be interesting to see what kind of reception Kobe receives in front of the Boston faithful when the two teams go head-to-head on Wednesday.