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Vanessa Bryant Once Asked Kobe Bryant Why He Played Through So Many Injuries While In Pain: “What About The Fans Who Saved Up To See Me Play Just Once?”

Vanessa Bryant Once Asked Kobe Bryant Why He Played Through So Many Injuries While In Pain: “What About The Fans Who Saved Up To See Me Play Just Once?”

Kobe Bryant was a one-of-a-kind talent, playing his entire career with the Los Angeles Lakers. Fans have seen him on the floor every other night giving his all, but not many knew he was playing through some of the nastiest injuries.

One year after his tragic passing in a helicopter crash on January 26, 2020, along with daughter Gianna and seven others, he was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in May 2021. Vanessa Bryant was asked to speak, and she gave fans an insight into how much he loved them.

"Kobe was on a different level, he never took shortcuts when it came to basketball. He gave this game his all. Kobe played through injury after injury. To name a few, he had IVs administered during halftimes to play through food poisoning and the flu. He played with a broken nose. He had a broken finger, and had it snapped back in place just enough to finish the game."

"He also taught himself how to use his left hand to play the rest of the season while his finger healed. He even swished two free throws with a torn Achilles, then walked off the court on his own."

"People don't know this, but one of the reasons my husband played through injuries and pain was because he said he remembered being a little kid, sitting in the nosebleeds with his dad to watch his favorite player [Michael Jordan] play."

"Kobe didn't want to disappoint his fans, especially the ones in the 300 sections that saved up to watch him play."

"I remember asking him why he couldn't just sit a game out because he was hurting. he said, 'what about the fans that saved up to watch me play just once?' He never forgot about his fans."

Kobe had an outstanding career, winning two scoring championships and making 18 All-Star appearances in his 20-year career. Added to that were five NBA championships, one more than former teammate and friend, Shaquille O'Neal.

Black Mamba had a winning mentality and was lethal on both ends of the floor. He holds the record for the second-most points in a basketball game with 81 and has his two jersey numbers (8 and 24) hanging in the rafters at Staples Center.