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Kobe Bryant on how he developed the Mamba Mentality

Photo: Kobe Bryant's Muse

Many people remember Kobe’s championships, the game-winners, and all the joy Kobe Bryant brought to the game of basketball. But, before all of the highs, came a few lows. After growing up in Italy, Kobe’s family moved back into the United States while he was in high school. Kobe says this transition was not easy whatsoever, stating:

“I didn’t know anybody. I was very awkward, skinny-looking, never spoke. I sat at the lunch table all by myself, no friends. I was upset that I had moved and I had all this resentment and anger inside of me that I hadn’t really let out.”

On top of this, Bryant also revealed that he could not speak English and struggled reading. One of the teachers noticed his struggles and told his mother that he could possibly be dyslexic. Kobe says this hurt him tremendously, stating that it “shocked the s***” out of him.

To cope with his struggles, Bryant turned to the game of basketball. He wanted to “delay the eruption” and let his emotions out on the basketball floor. He had never played using emotion before, but said in doing this, “everything about the game changed.” He added that playing with that rage was “new to him,” but that he “f****** loved it.”

No matter what happened in Kobe’s life, he always knew he could turn to basketball and let out whatever emotion he was feeling. The game was therapeutic to him and he smartly used that to his advantage. This is where the Mamba was born.

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