Before the Los Angeles Lakers faced off against the defending NBA champion Golden State Warriors on Thursday night on the road, someone very special to Kobe Bryant had a message for the future Hall of Famer.
NBA legend and former Lakers general manager, Jerry West, wanted to say a few words to Bryant on the big screen at Oracle Arena before he played his last game in Oakland.
West, the man who pulled off the franchise-altering trade with the Charlotte Hornets to acquire Bryant, has been as close to Bryant as anyone during his basketball career in the NBA and expressed his admiration in the following tribute video above.
Back in 1996, West made the bold move to trade veteran center Vlade Divac to the Hornets in exchange for Bryant. Kobe was drafted out of high school with the 13th overall pick in the draft that year.
West had tremendous faith in Bryant after an incredible pre-draft workout and obviously made the right choice to make the trade despite all the questions about the decision at the time.