Mamba Out: How Kobe Made It Into Our Hearts and Our Beer Pong Games

Kobe hit his basketball prime when the majority of Millenials were graduating high school and entering college. He was the champion of our generation.

The 90’s had Michael Jordan, Shaq, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Allen Iverson. We grew up hearing about these legends, watching them in Space Jam and Kazaam. But we didn’t quite experience it until Kobe’s rise to fame.

We had Kobe, who started his career playing with the legends of the 90’s, but continued to play the game well into our 20-something lives.

His name was a staple during every college party. If you made a cup, you shouted, “Kobe,” to pay tribute to the most prominent player of our time.

That all changed in 2013 when Bryant tore his Achilles tendon—forever changing his game.

After that, shooting a “Kobe,” was a heckle from the other team. You missed a shot, they yelled, “Kobe!” If they swatted your bounce, they yelled, “Kobe!” His name forever changed our beer pong game.

But last night, Kobe stepped out on the court for his final game, determined to relive his glory, despite his years of physical decline. His teammates banded together, feeding Kobe the ball with every possession, creating a perfect night for Bryant and his fans.

He scored 60 points—his first time doing so since 2009 when they played The Knicks at Madison Square Garden.

Everything in his career led up to this final, legendary moment. After 1,346 regular season games, 220 playoff games, 1 sexual assault charge (that was dropped), the 2008 MVP award, and two Olympic gold medals, he earned this game.

He earned back the respect of his fans and showed us why he’s a legend.

It might be time to bring “Kobe” back to the game of beer pong.

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