Morgantown, West Virginia – Yesterday would have marked NBA Legend Kobe Bryant’s 42nd birthday. Bryant, who was tragically killed earlier in the year in a helicopter crash, paved the way and inspired many young players.
Several West Virginia players, including Oscar Tshiebwe, Miles McBride, Taz Sherman and Emmitt Matthews, Jr. discussed what Kobe meant to them growing up.
Junior Emmitt Matthews, Jr. said, “He made a huge impact on all basketball players. After he left the game of basketball, he showed that he could go on to do other great things with storytelling and other interests outside of basketball.”
Freshman Jalen Bridges said the following about Kobe’s influence on him: “His whole approach to the game was different than every other player and that’s why Kobe is one of the best basketball players of all time. Kobe will never, ever be forgotten.”
Sophomore guard Miles McBride added: “All players today try to emulate everything about his game. He had that competitive grind that told his opponents ‘I’m not going to let you win, I’m not going to let you get the last laugh.'”
— WVU Men's Basketball (@WVUhoops) August 24, 2020