Kobe Bryant was always compared with Michael Jordan. The comparison followed him his entire career. Eventually, the two became close friends. But it wasn’t Kobe’s idea to be exactly like Jordan.
Basketball historian Roland Lazenby joined the Scoop B Radio Podcast to reveal an interesting story how Adidas wanted Bryant to replicate MJ. One of the things they told a young Kobe was to shave his head, per Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson of Heavy:
“What happened was Kobe wasn’t even thinking about – I mean he liked Michael Jordan but he did think to be exactly like Jordan with shaving his head and all that stuff, that was because Adidas discovered him and thought that he could be the next Jordan and told his AAU coach that. They began pushing that agenda and suddenly what do you do when you have a 16 year old kid and you tell him he’s going to be the next Jordan? Well next thing you know he’s shaving his head, he’s studying the tapes, you know if that’s going to be his job he’d better know what it is.”Roland Lazenby
Full Scoop B Radio Podcast episode with Roland Lazenby: