“We’ve learned Kobe Bryant has been asked to run the Federal Reserve. The feeling is, he can do more with three quarters than most of us can do with a whole dollar.” – Peter Vescey, NY Post
What are the makings of a Titan? In Greek mythology, a Titan is an immortal deity of great strength. Although their kind was eventually overthrown by the Olympians, individuals with seemingly celestial talent are birthed from the flesh of man. It’s easy to assume that there will be others who follow in their footsteps, but that is rarely the case. With the 1984 coming of Michael Jeffrey Jordan, the National Basketball Association witnessed what appeared to be a celestial anomaly like no other.
At the time of his second and final retirement in 1999, Michael Jordan left several clones in his wake. But none could compare. In the years since his retirement, there have been a battalion of young Jordan-lites who have been mentioned in a sentence with him. Vince Carter’s insane athleticism and North Carolina Tar Heel pedigree reminded many of MJ, as did Jerry Stackhouse’s competitive fire, and Tracy McGrady’s explosive scoring ability. With each year there were whispers of the coming of the “Next One,” yet each of the aforementioned shooting guards fell short on one attribute or another.
Some possessed Jordan’s penchant for scoring, but not his stalwart defensive effort. Others were as explosive athletically (more so in the case of Vince Carter), but not his indomitable will. Some, as was the case with Harold “Baby Jordan” Minor, were crushed for even being jokingly compared to him. For every god there is always a would-be usurper, and those who worship at the altar of that basketball deity are an unforgiving lot.
Let it not go unsaid that Kobe Bryant is at least the second-best shooting guard of all time, with MJ being the clear choice for No. 1. There are even those who would dare say that, skill-for-skill, Kobe Bryant is the better of the two. Like the Titan Prometheus of Greek mythology, Bryant is alleged to have stolen fire from one who sits at the zenith of basketball’s Mount Olympus, and is accused of using it to ignite the competitive fire deep in the belly of mere mortals.
What is it about Kobe Bryant that has allowed him to will himself into this conversation of greatest player ever?
Read more at The Shadow League.