Although Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant is now in retirement, he still remains attached to the game that helped mold his career and life. The game of basketball brought plenty of joy and pain to his life, shaping Bryant into one of the most iconic figures in NBA history.
Bryant has stayed busy during his first season of retirement with many non-basketball related tasks, such as his company Kobe Inc. Also, it was reported earlier this week that his wife Vanessa gave birth to their third girl, Bianka.
The 18-time All-Star has been in contact with head coach Luke Walton this season, while also remaining close to the NBA through social media. ESPN announced on Friday that they have partnered with Bryant to present Canvas – a new documentary-type show.
The show will premiere on Christmas, during NBA Countdown on ABC, with Michelle Beadle, Chauncey Billups, Jalen Rose and Lakers legend Earvin “Magic” Johnson. The show is a six-part series, with Bryant serving as a creator, writer and director.
Debuting just before the Golden State Warriors-Cleveland Cavaliers game at 2 P.M. EST, the first episode is titled ‘Guarding The Greats’. Bryant and ESPN will dive into the topic of focusing on how to guard the elite NBA players.
ESPN Vice President of original content Kevin Wildes gave some insight into the partnership with Bryant, describing the type of project to expect, via Ben Cafardo of ESPN Media Zone:
“Kobe is one of the most important athletes of the past 20 years, known for his brilliant basketball mind equally as much as his spellbinding athleticism,” Wildes said. “These videos, which are more like short films, mirror the unique approach Kobe took to the game of basketball. We’re eager for the fans to see his thought process come to life in video form.”
Each episode of the six-part series will cover a different on-court topic in the NBA, from the perspective of Bryant. The five-time NBA champion will also provide a Spanish version of the documentary, which will be shown on ESPN Deportes.
The additional five episodes will all be shown during different points of the 2016-17 NBA season, with some being tied into particular regular season matchups on ESPN and ABC.
Docen Media, a company focused on delivering sports stories across different platforms, will be in charge of presenting and putting together the project, along with ESPN. Docen Media is a subdivision of Kobe Inc. and helped bring forth other productions such as ‘Kobe Bryant’s Muse.