Kobe Bryant’s S’pore Visit Was One Of Many Reasons Why He Was A Role Model On & Off The Court

Kobe Bryant Visited Singapore In 2009 To Play Basketball With Young Athletes

Every basketball enthusiast would have watched YouTube videos of Kobe Bryant ‘destroying’ defenders on the court as they try to learn and mimic his effortless skills.


From moments like not flinching when Matt Barnes ‘faked’ a pass to his face to shooting a buzzer-beater over Dwayne Wade, Kobe will always be remembered for his “Mamba Mentality”.

However, the world was left in shock on Sunday (26 Jan) when news broke that Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna, fondly known as Gigi, had died from a helicopter crash.


Nicknamed “The Black Mamba”, Kobe Bryant of the LA Lakers was arguably one of the most dominant players to have ever played the sport. His numerous achievements throughout his 20-year-long career have cemented his legacy as one of the greatest basketball players of all time, in the same league as other outstanding players like Michael Jordan and LeBron James.

But beyond his stellar performances on the court, Kobe was also an inspiration in other aspects of his life, earning him admirers even from outside the basketball world.

We look at the moments that made him the legend that he has become and will be for many years to come.

1. From high school Ace to five-time NBA champion

Kobe’s breathtaking skills were evident from a young age, when NBA scouts noticed him playing for the Aces, Lower Merion High School’s basketball team.

They promptly catapulted him to a professional career, which he thrived in, winning a grand total of five championships in seven NBA finals appearances.

Though the journey wasn’t entirely smooth-sailing, Kobe’s determination meant that he would pick himself up from every downfall, proving critics wrong.


Kobe celebrated his first championship title in 2000 at the age of just 21.

Playing alongside Shaquille O’Neal, the duo dominated the court for 2 years, winning two more titles before they parted ways following a public feud.


After the separation, Kobe struggled to find his footing until he formed a new partnership with Spaniard Pau Gasol, to win another title for the Lakers.


The duo went on to win the 2009 and 2010 NBA championship titles, which contributed to the five titles Kobe achieved throughout his career.

2. A keen mentor for young athletes

Having carved his own career from a young age, Kobe understood the importance of mentorship for youths.

He never let his success and fame get in his way, readily offering to coach young players whenever the opportunity arose.

In 2009, he set aside time to coach aspiring basketball players, despite having a busy schedule on his one-day visit to Singapore.

Kobe Bryant at the Singapore Indoor Stadium

Kobe was here as part of his Asian tour for Nike, but made the most of his time by meeting local athletes and speaking with the media.


The Singaporean athletes could count themselves lucky after receiving such a precious opportunity, one which perhaps only Kobe’s daughter Gigi could boast of.

3. A loving father & role model

Besides inspiring young athletes, Kobe was also an admirable figure to someone very close to him – his daughter, Gigi.

Bringing her to many of his games, victory celebrations and press conferences, Kobe instilled the love for basketball in his daughter, who vowed to continue his legacy.


He made nurturing his daughter’s passion his new pursuit after announcing his retirement in 2015, being a constant presence at her games and training sessions.


However, despite the rigour, he always ensured that he was her father first, reminding her,

You know, you’re my daughter before you’re a basketball player.

He even told CBS News in an interview that the greatest challenge he faced was “making sure she knows that I love her whether she plays well or plays like crap.”

4. Pursued success beyond the basketball court

Besides coaching his daughter, Kobe’s accomplishment post-retirement also includes an Oscar, for a a 6-minute short film titled “Dear Basketball” based on a short poem he had written.

The film described Kobe’s 20 year-long basketball career and the love that he had for the game since he was a young boy.


Surprised by his the accolade, Kobe described winning the Oscar as better than winning an NBA championship title, which was truly something for someone who lived and breathed basketball.


His win, while unexpected, was proof of just how hard he was willing to work to turn his passion into a reality, and see it flourish.

Kobe Bryant was the all-star of all stars

Whether it was his conduct on the court or outside of it, Kobe Bryant’s poise and attitude earned him many admirers.


Basketball has lost a legend too soon, a young family has lost an amazing father and husband, and the world has lost an inspirational figure. Rest in peace, Kobe.


MS News would like to express our condolences to the Bryant family and everyone who has been affected by his death.

Featured image adapted from Facebook and Instagram.

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