One of the most prestigious award ceremonies for the professional sports community, the ESPYs, took place on Wednesday and was filled with heartwarming and inspiring speeches from the award winners.
Golden State Warriors star Klay Thompson won the ESPY award for Best Comeback Athlete after missing two consecutive seasons battling ACL and Achilles injuries before coming back to help the Warriors win the 2022 NBA Championship. In a passionate acceptance speech, Thompson honored the late Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant by describing how Bryant’s influence helped guide him through two tough years.
With Thompson’s acceptance speech being a tribute to Bryant and his late daughter, Gianna Bryant, social media helped the speech go viral and filled the hearts of many Laker and Kobe fans globally. Bryant’s wife, Vanessa Bryant, took notice of the speech and took to Instagram to thank Thompson for honoring her husband and daughter, via NBCS Warriors:
Vanessa Bryant thanks Klay for his tribute to Kobe and Gigi at the ESPYS ❤️
(via Vanessa Bryant/IG) pic.twitter.com/goswDflYTo
— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) July 21, 2022
The bounce-back season that resulted in Thompson’s fourth championship could not have been written any better than it was. Averaging 19 points on 38.5 percent shooting from deep in the postseason, the five-time All-Star put Bryant’s ‘Mamba Mentality’ to practice by achieving something that would have made the Mamba proud.
The Mamba Mentality is more than just a basketball philosophy, but it is a life philosophy for anyone wishing to overcome obstacles as big as Thompson’s were the past two years with devastating injuries.
With many professional athletes living in the ways and practicing the advice of Kobe, the honor they give to him is something Vanessa will always cherish and give gratitude towards. As Vanessa and her wonderful three daughters continue to live in honor of Kobe and Gigi, the journey to living and playing for Kobe gives strength and success to all, and Thompson was the example.
Aaron Judge Looks To Embody Kobe Bryant’s ‘Mamba Mentality’
How Kobe Bryant reached the world through the game of basketball was inexpressibly marvelous. The most famous way Bryant impacted others was his use and philosophy of the ‘Mamba Mentality’, which is simply going on the constant quest to becoming the best version of yourself.
While Bryant did inspire a lot of NBA players to look up to him and practice the Mamba Mentality, Bryant’s influence was so grand that even MLB players look up to and honor the five-time NBA champion.
During MLB All-Star weekend, New York Yankees star Aaron Judge spoke about inheriting Kobe’s mentality and how it has impacted him as a man and as a baseball player.
Currently, Judge has helped lead the Yankees to the best record in the MLB. The four-time All-Star has been all-around contributor to the team success and will look to do even more when the postseason rolls around.
The postseason is where the ‘Mamba Mentality’ shines the brightest on the field, but no matter what happens with Judge and the Yankees, the effort to emulate Kobe’s mindset has benefited Judge abundantly. Now across professional sports, fans are seeing the appreciation and impact Bryant has made.
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