So we decided to dedicate a batch of special TARNATION! Sports t shirts to the leader of the purple and gold. The Kobenator has long been known as a basketball assassin, so why not immortalize that sentiment on a t-shirt?
Just before his injury, we discussed Kobe and his stellar play on our TARNATION! Sports radio podcast with special guest Daniel Benzali.
Then last week when the Black Mamba went down with an to an Achilles tear injury last week, the basketball superstar wrote a long post on his facebook page about how disappointed he was, venting his frustration publicly, which endeared him even more to his fans.
His post was heartfelt, but also inspiring to anyone who might think about giving up, saying,
“There are far greater issues/challenges in the world then a torn achilles. Stop feeling sorry for yourself, find the silver lining and get to work with the same belief, same drive and same conviction as ever.”
How could you not cheer for his true warrior nature? Hey, if we were in the caveman days, he’d be the one slaying the dinosaur!
So this shirt came out of an admiration of his “Mamba Mentality”.
As for his basketball career, there is no way this injury will keep the Black mamba from biting his opponents in the ass a year from now. Who knows? Maybe even two years from now!
Although Isiah Thomas retired due to an Achilles injury, other pro basketball players have recovered from similar injuries. You can name Dominique Wilkins, Chauncey Billups and Elton Brand as three. Why shouldn’t you expect Kobe to join them?
Through all his team’s difficulties this season, he’s been the one solid hook you can hang your hat on. Sure, you can argue that “Dantoni-o” hung himself on that hook by playing the man too many minutes, but that’s history at this point.
A recent Sports Illustrated article told of how Kobe “stood in a corner of the locker room with tears in his eyes, lipstick on his cheek and a quotation at his back. It was from a Danish journalist named Jacob Riis, who died nearly 100 years ago, but found an unlikely fan in Spurs coach Gregg Popovich. Mike Brown worked for Popovich, so when the Lakers hired him in 2011, he brought typed copies of the quotation to Los Angeles. One of them was placed in a brown frame with a purple mat and hung on the wall next to Bryant’s locker.
Brown was fired five games into this season, but amid all the upheaval, nobody thought to take down the quote, which is why Bryant found himself perched in front of it Friday night at the most excruciating moment of his career. “When nothing seems to help, I go look at a stonecutter hammering away at his rock perhaps a hundred times without as much as a crack showing in it. Yet at the hundred and first blow it will split in two, and I know it was not that blow that did it, but all that had gone before.”
That hundred and first blow happened at the worst time for his team, but looking forward, I think you can count on seeing The Kobenator being the stonecutter instead of the rock. He’ll be cutting his opponents to pieces again on the court in 2014. His mamba mentality won’t let him give up.
Check out the Kobenator Basketball T Shirts here.