The NBA All-Star game takes place next week on February 14 at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Canada. This will be the first time the game will take place outside of the United States.
Next Sunday will be the last time we see LA Lakers forward Kobe Bryant in the All-Star game, as he is set to retire from the NBA at the end of the season.
Teams and players have paid their respects to the five-time NBA Champion since his announcement, reflecting on all the times they have encountered Bryant on the court, including Golden State Warriors guard and Western Conference All-Star teammate, Stephen Curry.
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In an interview with GQ, the reigning NBA MVP was asked what his favorite Kobe memory, and he recalled a meeting between himself and the Lakers star during his rookie season back in March of 2010.
He said: "Our rookie year we were playing at Oracle and they had a 3-point lead down the stretch. He got fouled, going to the free throw line to ice the game with two free throws. As he's walking from one end of the court to the other, I'm this rookie that's just kind of living in the moment and I walk up to him as he's walking to the free throw line: "Hey, man, you nervous about these free throws?"
"The look he gave me was so just mean and cold. Just like, "What are you talking about? Get out of my face, you dumb rookie." He obviously made the two free throws and they won. I'll remember that look he gave me forever."
Obviously, what Curry did in that contest wasn't enough to knock Bryant off his free-throw game. He's made 83.6 percent of his free-throws across his career, so trying to get in his mind before he takes one probably isn't going to affect him much.
What Kobe probably didn't know was that the rookie he gave the 'death stare' to because he trash-talked to him, would become one of the best players in the league in just a couple of years time.