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Retired NBA legend Kobe Bryant is still four years away from being eligible for the Hall of Fame, but the former Los Angeles Lakers shooting guard already knows who he wants to present him with the prestigious honor.
In an interview with Complex magazine, Bryant says he would prefer to have either Michael Jordan or Phil Jackson on stage with him at the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts — as they are the two people who have had the most influence on his basketball career.
“Wow, that’s a great question,” Bryant told Complex. “In terms of who might present, for me it’s two people: Michael Jordan or Phil Jackson. They’ve been the greatest mentors, not only in my career as an athlete, but also as a person. And what I might say is just a lot of thank yous. Cause I’ve had a lotta help along the way. A lotta lotta help.”
Jackson and Bryant won five titles together with the Lakers while Bryant emulated his game after Jordan’s and is considered the closest thing we’ve seen to MJ.
Bryant will have his No. 8 and No. 24 jerseys retired at halftime during the Lakers’ game against the Golden State Warriors on Dec. 18.
The 18-time All-Star averaged 25.0 points per game in his 20-year career and has scored the third most points in NBA history.