Legendary NBA star, Kobe Bryant, has announced his retirement from basketball at the end of the season.
Kobe Bryant’s career lasted an amazing 20 years, where he played only for the Los Angeles Lakers, winning 5 rings with them.
Kobe turned 37 in August, and age combined with recurrent injuries have seen a drastic reduction in his production.
In a poem written on The Player’s Tribune, Kobe announced his exit, saying this season was all he had left to give.
“But I can’t love you obsessively for much longer,” Bryant wrote. “This season is all I have left to give. My heart can take the pounding. My mind can handle the grind but my body knows it’s time to say goodbye.
“And that’s OK. I’m ready to let you go.”
Following the Lakers’ loss to Indiana on Sunday night, the Black Mamba as he was known by fans, admitted he always knew it was coming.
“I’ve known for a while,” Bryant said. “A decision like this, you can’t make that decision based on outside circumstances. It has to be an internal decision, and finally I’ve decided to accept that I can’t actually do this anymore, and I’m OK with that.
“It takes a weight off my shoulders and everybody else’s.”