Boston Celtics star Jayson Tatum is one of the few active NBA players to have learned a few tricks of the trade from Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant. The Hall of Fame was a mentor to the rising star, and he hasn’t forgotten the sage advice he received from the five-time NBA champion.
Ahead of the Tokyo Olympics, Tatum opened up about wearing Bryant’s No.10 jersey for the U.S. team and one thing in particular that stays fresh on his mind after speaking with the former Lakers superstar, via Sports. Illustrated:
“I remember a conversation, maybe it was after a game, and he was saying a lot of people won’t understand what you’re doing,” Tatum said. He said, ‘What I mean by that is that those who really want to be big and really special really take that mentality all it takes. “He told me that it takes sacrifices because the ultimate question is how far are you willing to give up to be great.
Kyrie Irving, Devin Booker and Tatum are three of today’s best players who idolized Bryant and had a personal relationship with the late, iconic NBA greats. As Tatum prepares to honor Bryant with the No.10 jersey as a member of the United States squad, Booker attempts to win his first title with the Phoenix Suns while sporting the words “Be Legendary” on his shoes. , which Bryant told him to use as a sort of mantra throughout his career.
Bryant’s fingerprints are still all over the NBA and will be for generations to come. He has inspired countless players, and his legacy will live on as they continue to use his guidance as a driving force and motivation to be the best players possible.
LeBron and Anthony Davis will not play for the US team
Laker superstars LeBron James and Anthony Davis have chosen not to join other NBA stars on the U.S. team at the Tokyo Olympics.
This isn’t too surprising, with both players battling injuries throughout the 2020-21 campaign. James and Davis taking time off and having an offseason is a wise move in order to be 100% ready for the start of the 2021-22 NBA season in October.