Last week, ESPN released their NBARank for the best players in the NBA from No. 25 down to No. 21. Although many expected Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers being much lower than his rank of No. 6 from last year, no one thought he would fall all the way down to No. 25.
It comes as no surprise that Bryant would take this ranking by ESPN and use it as motivation to return. As if ESPN predicting the Lakers to finish 12th in the Western Conference wasn’t enough motivation for the five-time NBA champion, being considered the 25th best player in the league has only added more fuel to the fire.
On Wednesday, Bryant addressed the media at practice for the first time since the ESPN ranking and the sudden change to his Twitter avatar. He said the following about the controversial ranking according to Lakers Nation reporter Serena Winters:
“The way I look at it is that it’s kind of silly to me. 25 was pretty silly, pretty laughable. Still in all it’s still a challenge to that I willingly accept.”
At this point in time, there’s no telling if Bryant will return to form as an elite player in the NBA. He turned 35 back in August and is battling back from the most severe injury of his career. Not only will he attempt to bounce back after the torn Achilles at an advanced age, but this injury has ended a lot of NBA careers in the past.
Regardless of all the obstacles put in front of him, Bryant has built a hall-of-fame caliber career out of proving the doubters wrong and isn’t backing down from the biggest challenge of his career.
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