Wednesday marked the two-year anniversary of Kobe Bryant’s tragic death in a helicopter crash, alongside eight others including his 13-year-old daughter Gianna.
During his weekly appearance on 95.7 The Game’s “Damon & Ratto” Wednesday, Warriors coach Steve Kerr took a minute to reflect on what he remembered most about Kobe.
“Just having played against him for so much of my career, it was just watching how competitive he was night in and night out,” Kerr said. “Clearly one of the all-time greats.”
According to Land of Basketball, Kerr and Kobe played 24 times throughout their respective careers, splitting 12 wins apiece. The first time they ever played was Dec. 17, 1996 in a contest between Kerr’s Chicago Bulls and Bryant’s Los Angeles Lakers.
Once Kerr started playing with the San Antonio Spurs, they faced each other three straight seasons from 2001-03 in the playoffs. Granted, Kobe was at the peak of his powers in those days while Kerr was slowing down. During the 2003 Western Conference semifinals, Kobe outscored Kerr 79-0 in the three games they both played in, with Kerr playing a grand total of 10 minutes.
Kerr grew up in Lebanon but attended high school in the LA-area and rooted for the Lakers, so he understands Kobe’s deep connection with the region.
“Being from Los Angeles and understanding what he meant to that city, it was pretty profound," Kerr said. "It’s still hard to really come to grips with that he’s not with us anymore. It’s just devastating.”