24 or 8? That is the question most of us Laker fans have been wondering for quite a while now. As most of you basketball fans know Kobe Bryant has had two jersey numbers. One was the number eight and the other is currently the number twenty-four. I have always wondered what number the Los Angeles Lakers are going to retire after Kobe decides to hang it all up.
Number eight had so many memories like winning the 1997 NBA Slam Dunk Contest, also three-peating with Shaquille O’Neal. Who doesn’t remember that famous day when Kobe Bryant dropped eighty-one points on the Toronto Raptors? This is still currently the second highest points scored in a game behind Wilt Chamberlain’s one hundred points. Personally, he will rank number one in Los Angeles Lakers history for me. Remember when Kobe hit a buzzer beater in the 4th quarter to send the Lakers into overtime with the Phoenix Suns in 2006? Then again in overtime he hit another shot to win the game! Unfortunately, the Lakers ended up losing the series 4-2.
Before the 2006-2007 season, Bryant changed his number to 24, because he wore that number while he played in high school. In 2008 Kobe led the Lakers to the NBA Finals only to wind up losing to the Boston Celtics 4-2. That year Kobe got his only MVP award. It’s a shame because Bryant deserves more than one MVP for his stellar career.
In 2009 the Lakers went to the finals again, but this time they would end up playing against Dwight Howard and the Orlando Magic. They won the series giving Bryant his fourth Championship and he ended up getting the finals MVP award. Then the very next year once again the Lakers went to the finals. This time it was a rematch of the 2008 NBA Finals against the Boston Celtics. Lakers would win that in seven games, giving Bryant his fifth championship and second finals MVP.
On March 30, 2013, Kobe passed Wilt Chamberlain in fourth all time in scoring. Next is Michael Jordan on the list, Bryant’s idol. The question now for the Los Angeles Lakers is should they retire number 8 or number 24? I guess we will just have to wait and see when Kobe retires.
What number do you think he should retire in? Let us know in the comments!
Written by Stefan Abramian