Jeanie Buss Reveals Touching Story About Kobe Bryant And Phil Jackson

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Jeanie Buss Reveals Touching Story About Kobe Bryant And Phil Jackson

 

Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna were among the nine people on board the helicopter that crashed and left no survivors in Calabasas, California on Sunday, January 26.

Ever since that tragic day, fans and players and everyone around the league have honored the NBA legend in every imaginable way, rightfully so.

On Instagram, Los Angeles Lakers owner Jeanie Buss now shared a beautiful story of Bryant and Phil Jackson’s relationship. It turns out that even after Jackson left Los Angeles for good, Bryant contacted him frequently.

 

Phil distributed a book (during the first long road trip) to each player chosen specifically chosen for him. Some would enthusiastically jump right in but others would toss them aside and give an eye roll. Once Shaq even wrote a book report! Phil enjoyed cultivating an intellectual curiosity in his players – to have an open mind and seek new experiences, ask questions and never declare something as boring before even giving it a chance. When Phil played for the Knicks, his teammate, Bill Bradley, inspired his curiosity by taking him to cultural events or museums in every city they visited. I would watch Phil curate his book list until he knew what he wanted to give each player. It made me sad if I heard any player joking about it; I didn’t want Phil’s feelings to be hurt. I shared with him how I felt about it and asked him if it bothered him. His answer blew me away. He said, “No, it doesn’t bother me. If they take the book and put it on a shelf and it sits there for 10 years that is okay because there will come a day when he reads it and the message will be delivered. There is no time frame on teaching.” Phil doesn’t coach a player for a season, he coaches him for a lifetime. This is why he is great coach but also one of the best human beings I know. He mentors former players and makes time to listen and encourage. In fact, Kobe asked Phil to send him books over the last few years. Kobe enjoyed coaching Gigi and her teammates so much he invited Phil to the Mamba Academy and watch.”

 

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Phil distributed a book (during the first long road trip) to each player chosen specifically chosen for him. Some would enthusiastically jump right in but others would toss them aside and give an eye roll. Once Shaq even wrote a book report! Phil enjoyed cultivating an intellectual curiosity in his players – to have an open mind and seek new experiences, ask questions and never declare something as boring before even giving it a chance. When Phil played for the Knicks, his teammate, Bill Bradley, inspired his curiosity by taking him to cultural events or museums in every city they visited. I would watch Phil curate his book list until he knew what he wanted to give each player. It made me sad if I heard any player joking about it; I didn’t want Phil’s feelings to be hurt. I shared with him how I felt about it and asked him if it bothered him. His answer blew me away. He said, “No, it doesn’t bother me. If they take the book and put it on a shelf and it sits there for 10 years that is okay because there will come a day when he reads it and the message will be delivered. There is no time frame on teaching.” Phil doesn’t coach a player for a season, he coaches him for a lifetime. This is why he is great coach but also one of the best human beings I know. He mentors former players and makes time to listen and encourage. In fact, Kobe asked Phil to send him books over the last few years. Kobe enjoyed coaching Gigi and her teammates so much he invited Phil to the Mamba Academy and watch. I included a photo from one of their visits this January – Phil and Kobe the student / teacher bond lasts forever. Shannon Brown: "Dreams from My Father" by Barack Obama Kobe Bryant: "Blink" by Malcolm Gladwell Andrew Bynum: "Six Easy Pieces" by Walter Mosley Jordan Farmar: "Makes Me Wanna Holler" by Nathan McCall Derek Fisher: "Soul on Ice," by Eldridge Cleaver Pau Gasol: “2666” by Roberto Bolano Luke Walton: "The Monkey Wrench Gang" by Edward Abbey Metta World Peace: "Sacred Hoops" by Phil Jackson Sasha Vujacic: “Reservation Blues” by Alexie

A post shared by Jeanie Buss (@jeaniebuss) on

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