By now there is a good chance you’ve seen this interview with Kobe Bryant and Rich Eisen. In case you missed it we have it for you below. This is an excellent discussion in so many ways. The maturity Kobe Bryant displays, is what you’d expect when a man reaches 40 years old. Having just celebrated his 40th birthday on this past Friday, August 24th. (Check out Mamba Day ‘look back’ at Teams He Killed while in L.A.) In this interview he speaks about coaching his daughters, who are now embracing the game of basketball.
Kobe even talks about them running the triangle, and teasing Phil Jackson about being a better coach.
Using sports as a metaphor for life, is a beautiful statement. Often I’ve used it in business training, because sports is so much like running a business. However, ultimately, learning how to play sports effectively can help a person run a business better, and more importantly, live life in a more fulfilling way. Too often athletes get pigeonholed into being one dimensional. The same forces that look to feed off their talents try to keep them under their control …
This even extends to controlling how Athletes Protest; Or forcing them to Love America
“It’s hard for athletes to Transition”, Kobe Bryant says sitting face to face with Rich Eisen. Rich, made the transition from just working for ESPN, to running his own sports company. He decided to be ‘more’ than just an employee. In a way this is what Kobe is talking about here as well. Athletes have to think about life beyond basketball. This applies even to those who do not make it to professional levels. That’s actually the kind of training I had growing up, as my coaches always made sure to mix that message in.
Today, kids are dreaming of the big lights, the shoe contracts, and all the fortunes. When things don’t happen to take them that way, disappointment sets in. However, isn’t life the same way? Disappointment is part of life, and learning to deal with not getting our way, in positive and constructive ways, really matter. It’s refreshing to hear of Kobe talking about working to create products that directly address these matters, and inspires even more from our athletes, than just ‘entertainment’.
Kobe was the Ultimate Competitor. Our society needs more of that from it’s men and women. We have to Overcome Adversity better….
The mentality of an athlete, is something I’ve long been an advocate for. I don’t mean the ‘new age’ participation trophy kind either. I’m talking about the old school mentality where we had to fight to win, and only the winner took home a trophy. You had to learn how to lose with grace. Something that loser in Jacksonville, FL that shot up the Madden Tournament could have used. Too many people are taking Loses way too hard, and lashing out at others – or self-harming. This is evidence that our society is not benefiting from this ‘change’ in how we appreciate winning.
Throughout his playing days, Kobe was often hated by the media. The reasons for the hate, always seemed to stem from his Case in Colorado. Black men are not allowed to be ‘accused’ of raping a white woman in America. That’s always career suicide. Somehow, Kobe Bryant found a way to come back from that too. I’d say it’s the winning mentality he’s got; from years and years of working on himself. Going back to his days as a kid in Italy, to transitioning to living in Philly, to playing for a historic Winning Franchise in the Los Angeles Lakers.
Then, Kobe Bryant had to learn to play for one of the greatest basketball minds of our lifetime: Phil Jackson
All of this, while not getting the kind of respect, he rightfully deserved. He just kept playing, and putting up results. It’s a lesson again, for the rest of us to learn from. We cannot worry about the respect we get, or do not get, even when we should get it. We have to continue to go out and perform, every single night. The Mentality of a Kobe Bryant, will help us build a better world. His thoughts on Lebron, sum it up best. A huge reason he has not gotten the respect he deserves, is the media’s love for Lebron James. When asked how Laker fans will embrace him, I love what Kobe had to say.
Laker fans are about winning, and when we see those wins, that’s all that will matter.
But then too, even if the Banners do not come, it’s the desire to go out and compete that matters the most.
- 2/27/20 Update :: sadly :: an update; on ‘drama’ around the Celebraion of Life; for the Black Mamba less than a year, after writing this