Kobe Bryant was the most dominant player in the late 2000s, leading the Los Angeles Lakers to three NBA Finals and two championships.
Side by side with Pau Gasol as his second-best player, the Black Mamba was on a mission to dominate night in and night out, regardless of the opposition.
Kobe was so good that watching him win his fifth NBA championship in 2010 made Dwyane Wade realize that the rest of the league was in trouble unless they did something.
He recently confessed on the “Skweek” podcast that Kobe’s dominance made him reach out to LeBron James and Chris Bosh to team up and form that Miami Heat Big 3 (via ClutchPoints).
"That was our summer of free agency… Kobe was winning all these rings and I was like, 'Wait, hold on. Now he got 5 and we got 1?'"
Dwyane Wade on hitting up LeBron to join him on the Heat after the Lakers won the NBA title in 2010.
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPoints) September 25, 2023
Simply said, Kobe was so dominant that he pretty much changed the way NBA teams are built nowadays, not to mention the massive impact he had on James’ career.
James became the ultimate villain for taking his talents to South Beach, but it also helped him win two of his four NBA championships.
Joining Miami taught James some championship pedigree, as Wade and the organization had already been through that.
LeBron’s legacy could’ve been entirely different had he never left Cleveland, either for better or worse.
Also, the way people think of Wade would be quite different as well, as he likely wouldn’t have had three championships.
There are all these memes now about players teaming up just to stop a 38-year-old LeBron James.
And the reality is that they all teamed up to stop one man and one man only: The Black Mamba himself.NEXT: Miami Heat Player Reveals A Major Personal Achievement