Kobe Bryant has today offered a personal welcome to Steven Gerrard after it was confirmed that the former England soccer captain would be heading to Los Angeles this summer in a deal with the city's MLS franchise the LA Galaxy.
Bryant is a well known soccer enthusiast, having grown up with the game while his father played basketball in Italy, and expressed his delight at the move which will see one of the best soccer players of his generation come to the sports mad city to begin the next chapter in his illustrious career.
Big name arrival
With the Lakers in town the people of Los Angeles are used to sharing their living space with bonafide superstars of the basketball persuasion but it is testament to the success of the Galaxy's own success in recent years that they are able to welcome another star name of their own to join the party.
Speaking via the LA Galaxy's official YouTube channel, Kobe took time out to send a message directly to Gerrard who will remain in his native England until July as he completes his final season with boyhood club Liverpool.
After welcoming the veteran soccer star to "LaLa land" Kobe Bryant, as you might expect from someone as competitive as himself, didn't take long to get down to what really mattered - winning championships.
The Galaxy's five MLS titles may pail in comparison to the Lakers' 16 but, having won it all in 2014, the expectation will be of a repeat after such a high profile arrival. And Gerrard could do a lot worse than seeking out the advice of his basketball counterpart when he does touch down at LAX if he is seeking advice on how to go all the way in the USA.
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Bryant made clear his intentions to go check out Gerrard in action for the Galaxy during the 2015 season and it remains to be seen whether the Englishman will return the favor.
Current Liverpool teammate Daniel Sturridge is an avid NBA fan so perhaps he could offer Gerrard a crash course in the league before he heads across the pond. Even an NBA novice though would be aware of Kobe Bryant and, despite his advanced years, the legend of the game continues to defy the odds.
Although featuring on the court more sporadically than in years past Bryant has enjoyed a decent 2014-15 campaign - moving up to third place on the all-time scoring list in the process.
The Lakers meanwhile, continuing on in their quest for consistency, currently sit on a 11-24 record under head coach Byron Scott.
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