This year, the Los Angeles Lakers made history when they beat the Miami Heat to win the NBA championship. However, according to a friend of the late Kobe Bryant, he predicted the win three years before!
The Los Angeles Lakers won their 17th NBA Championship this year. The team, that the late Kobe Bryant was a player for, won against the Miami Heat in a tense finals match with the help of Anthony Davis and LeBron James.
Bryant made headlines this year when he passed away on January 26, 2020, in a tragic helicopter crash. The crash also sadly took his daughter, Gianna Bryant, 13, who was an upcoming basketball star too.
Kobe Bryant in Game Three of the Western Conference Quarterfinals during the NBA Playoff at Staples Center on April 26, 2007, in Los Angeles, California | Photo: Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images
MOURNING KOBE’S DEATH
The former NBA star’s best friend, Rob Pelinka mourned his death noting how part of his soul has been amputated. Pelinka and Bryant were actually friends long before the former became the Los Angeles Laker’s Vice President (VP) of Basketball Operations.
He was also the basketball player’s agent. When Bryant passed away, Pelinka paid tribute to his friend by dedicating the rest of the Laker’s season to the former player and his late daughter’s memories.
RECALLING PAST CONVERSATIONS
In a previous interview with ESPN, Pelinka recalled conversations he had with his late friend and the 13-year-old. The VP of basketball operations shared how Bryant and his daughter had believed the Lakers would win the championship again.
One of these conversations occurred in 2017 on “The Woj Pod,” just after Pelinka was hired as the team’s general manager. The late star’s best friend shared how Bryant, who was actually a soccer enthusiast instead of basketball, showed confidence in him leading the team back to victory.
According to Pelinka, Bryant said: “‘I think you’ll have the Lakers back winning a championship in two to three years.’” The VP actually helped bring Davis to join the Lakers after he was traded in from the New Orleans Pelicans.
Bryant’s friend couldn’t believe the prediction and responded: “‘You’ve got to be crazy.'" Despite doubting his best friend, the VP still figured he would put the work in and see how it goes with the team.
PREDICTION CAME TRUE & MAGIC’S MESSAGE
As predicted by Bryant, his former team did win within three years of the prediction. After the Lakers won the championship, Magic Johnson noted how the basketball team had deserved the win.
Johnson is the former player and President of Basketball Operations for the Lakers. He noted how the team had managed to rise above the loss of Bryant and the outbreak of the novel coronavirus disease to win.
KOBE’S WIDOW CELEBRATES WIN
Another person who celebrated the Laker’s win was Bryant’s widow, Vanessa Bryant. She took to her private Instagram account where she shared a throwback image of Pelinka and her later husband together and congratulated the team.
Showing how she was still mourning her husband’s death, she confessed how she wished he and their daughter were still around to see them win. Pelinka had actually known the late athlete for more than twenty years and he was also the godfather to the late basketball player’s teenage daughter.