Cohen's Analysis: Kobe Bryant was drafted by the Hornets in 1996, nearly joined the Clippers in 2004 and almost forced his way to the Bulls in 2007.
But ultimately, Kobe, who has helped the Lakers win five NBA championships, has played his entire NBA career with one franchise.
You can argue that Bryant remained loyal to the Lakers, but if you really examine the history of his career, Kobe never wanted to play in Charlotte, would have potentially signed with the Clippers as a free agent if the Lakers didn’t part ways with Shaq that same summer and requested a trade out of L.A. in 2007 before realizing Andrew Bynum was a legit center and prior to the team landing Pau Gasol in a blockbuster deal.
Along with Magic Johnson and Wayne Gretzky, Kobe is among the most celebrated athletes in Los Angeles pro sports history because of the longevity of time spent with the Lakers. However, it is a bit distorted when you really analyze the specifics.
Unless Mark Cuban’s proposed theory comes to fruition and L.A. decided to amnesty Bryant this summer (highly unlikely), the perennial All-Star and future first ballot Hall of Famer will probably start and finish his career with the Lakers.
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