— Nike Basketball (@nikebasketball) February 11, 2016
After his last NBA appearance in Cleveland, Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant provided LeBron James with a nice parting gift.
By David Hong
Los Angeles Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant, who is retiring after this season, played his last game in Cleveland on Wednesday night. Following the game, he gave Cleveland Cavaliers superstar LeBron James an unforgettable souvenir.
It was Kobe’s game-worn sneakers with his autograph and a small message as well.
Very classy move from the soon to be retired NBA star, who actually gave LeBron a pair of shoes before, early on in Kobe’s career. It was back in the 2002 NBA All-Star Weekend in Philadelphia, according to James via ESPN.com’s Dave McMenamin, when Bryant gave him a pair of Adidas sneakers. LeBron was still in high school back then.
Kobe and LeBron were maybe the two best NBA players back in the mid to late 2000s and have had their share of duels. Unfortunately, they never met in the NBA Finals. The closest was back in 2009 when Kobe’s Lakers advanced but LeBron’s Cavs fell just short in the Eastern Conference Finals.
There’s no doubt the respect will always be there between the two and in his final game at LeBron’s arena, Kobe decided to do something memorable for his former rival and I’m sure James will always appreciate it.