During their primes in the NBA, Kobe Bryant and Tracy McGrady had some epics battles. These two elite scorers used to go back and forth on the hardwood while trying to lead their teams to victory.
Although McGrady was never able to win that elusive championship with the teams he played on; there’s no question he earned Bryant’s respect. Kobe once referred to McGrady as the toughest player he had ever played against, and that’s pretty telling considering the competition Kobe faced during his 20 years in the league.
On Saturday, it was announced that McGrady would be a part of this year’s Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame class. Bryant promptly took to Twitter to congratulate his former on-court rival:
Congrats Tmac #HOF well deserved my brother
— Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) April 2, 2017
McGrady’s career came to an end back in 2013 when he gave it one more shot at a title with the San Antonio Spurs. The two-time scoring champion came up short that year with the Spurs falling to the Oklahoma City Thunder in the Western Conference Finals in six games.
As for Bryant, the former Los Angeles Lakers superstar will have to wait his turn to get the call to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. The five-time NBA champion walked away from the game last April after dropping 60 points on the Utah Jazz in the Lakers’ season finale at the Staples Center.
The legendary Laker will almost certainly join Tim Duncan as a first-ballot Hall of Famer with the two former players being eligible to be inducted in 2021.