In a recent appearance on "Hot Ones," Golden State Warriors' Stephen Curry shared three memorable encounters he had with the late Kobe Bryant during his rookie year and beyond. The first story involved a game against the Lakers when Curry hit a tough shot and noticed Bryant mouthing to a teammate, "Yo, he's nice." For Curry, it was an incredible validation of his skills by one of his idols.
The second anecdote took place during a preseason game, where Bryant exhibited his famous "Mamba Mentality" by relentlessly guarding Curry full court. Despite feeling exhausted, Curry managed to hit a long-range shot after being bumped off balance by Bryant. Trying to maintain his composure, Curry received a tap from Bryant but couldn't acknowledge it. He later requested the clip of the shot for his personal collection.
The third occasion addressed Bryant's observation of the "Baby Faced Assassin" nickname associated with Curry. Bryant recognized that behind Curry's joyful demeanor lies a fierce competitor and killer instinct. This acknowledgment held significant meaning for Curry, as Bryant rarely handed out compliments of that nature.
Curry expressed deep appreciation for receiving such praise from one of basketball's most influential icons, recognizing the impact and legacy of Kobe Bryant. Despite his own status as one of the NBA's greatest players, Curry humbly acknowledged the significance of being recognized and validated by someone he idolized.
Overall, Curry's stories highlight the moments when he interacted with Bryant on the court and experienced firsthand the respect, intensity, and keen observation that made Bryant a legend. These encounters left a lasting impression on Curry, showcasing the impact and inspiration Bryant had on a new generation of players.