Kobe Bryant is widely recognised as one of the greatest players in NBA history and has a stellar 20-year resume to back it up.
The Los Angeles Lakers legend enjoyed a hugely successful career which saw him win five championships and various individual honours such as an MVP, two Finals MVPs, and 18 All-Star appearances.
There are always regular debates about who would make it onto a list of the top five or top 10 players of all-time and Bryant recently weighed in with his opinion.
In an interview on the Hollywood Reporter‘s “Awards Chatter” podcast, the Black Mamba revealed who he would choose as his all-time starting five if he was to pick a team.
“Who else would fill out the starting lineup of the greatest basketball team ever?” he said. “Well, I gotta go with my guys. Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Bill Russell, and Hakeem Olajuwon. Those are my guys.”
It's interesting that Kobe didn't mention any current players such as LeBron James and stuck to past greats from the '90s.
He also didn't include himself and showed a real humbleness in regards to his own accomplishments.
Undoubtedly, there will be those who disagree with his choices but it will also be very difficult to contest it as those players have 26 titles between them.
Other notable absentees include Hall of Famers Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Wilt Chamberlain.
Despite keeping his name out, there are many others who would include the former Lakers superstar in their all-time starting five after his extraordinary achievements on the court in a Purple and Gold uniform.
He will be duly honoured by the only franchise he ever represented as they announced that both his number eight and 24 jerseys will be retired this season.
"It means I've been fortunate enough to have a really long career with one organisation — been fortunate enough to have a chapter — and then been fortunate enough to start another book and have that be successful, as well. So I've been very, very lucky," Bryant said.
The 39-year-old ranks third on the NBA's all-time scoring list after amassing an incredible 33,643 points during his 20 seasons in the Association.
He inspired so many players currently in the league and is truly one of the greatest icons in the history of basketball.