Before the great Kobe Bryant could ride off into the sunset off the back of a season-high 60 point performance against the Utah Jazz, the 37-year-old had to address the Staples Center crowd who have adored him for two decades.
The Black Mamba's sensational display ranks as the fifth-highest scoring performance in his 20-year career and even managed to melt down Twitter; temporarily, of course.
Bryant was a die-hard Los Angeles Lakers fan growing up and to bring five championships to the city is a dream come true in itself.
However, on top of all of his personal accolades, the lifelong Laker appeared grateful for the journey that has transpired above all else.
Bryant took to the court after the game to share his thoughts with the adoring Lakers faithful.
"I can't believe how fast 20 years went by, man, this is crazy," Bryant said in a speech to the crowd after the game. "This is absolutely crazy ... and to be standing at center court with you guys, my teammates behind me, appreciating the journey that we've been on - we've been through our ups, been through our downs. I think the most important part is we all stayed together throughout."
After playing his whole career in California, it was fitting that Bryant suggested even the all the writers in Hollywood would fail to pen a screenplay as incredible as this.
"You can't write something better than this," he said.
Kobe went on to thank the fans for their time together, just like a litany of basketball greats did for Vino prior to the game over a series of video packages that included: Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, LeBron James, Chris Paul, Paul George, Carmelo Anthony and Dwyane Wade.
"All I can do here is thank you guys," Bryant told the crowd. "Thank you guys for all the years of support. Thank you guys for all the motivation. Thank you for all the inspiration."
"What can I say? Mamba out," Bryant said fittingly with a smile to finish his address.
Before the Lakers took to the court to record their 101-96 victory over the Utah Jazz in their season's finale, another Lakers legend, Magic Johnson, took to the court to say a few words about the departing Bryant and introduce the aforementioned video clips.
"He never cheated us as fans," Johnson said. "He has played injured, he has played hurt, and we have five championship banners to show for it."
Shaquille O'Neal appeared in one of the opening videos alongside many former legends of the NBA and crowned Bryant "the greatest Laker ever," something which Johnson also suggested in his speech.
Stacked up against O'Neal, Johnson, Jerry West, Elgin Baylor, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Wilt Chamberlain, that's a very tall compliment. However, judging by Bryant's departing gift and the banners in the Staples Center rafters, it could be a very just one.