Oakland/Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Derek Carr has spent his entire NFL career in the Bay Area, but he is not a Golden State Warriors fan. He loves the Los Angeles Lakers and was seemingly devastated to hear the news about Kobe Bryant's sudden death on Sunday. Carr responded to the tragic news by posting a photo of himself hugging the NBA icon.
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"Thank you for everything!!! This one hurts," Carr wrote in the caption of his photo on Sunday.
This photo on the social media profile was not the only post that the Raiders QB made following the tragic crash. He also posted a video from a 2013 game between the Lakers and the Warriors. Bryant was shown limping toward the free-throw line during the latter stages of a hard-fought game. He was clearly injured, but it wasn't revealed until later in the evening that he had suffered a torn Achilles tendon.
Despite dealing with the injury and barely being able to walk onto the court, Bryant did just that. He sank two free throws before ultimately limping to the locker room with just over three minutes remaining. The Lakers would go on to win 118-116 amid a difficult season. Bryant, on the other hand, finished the year on the Injured/Reserve List.
"This right here. One of my favorite memories," Carr wrote about the video. "That mentality has inspired so many including myself in a huge way! Best believe it'll be on full display all around the world. Especially right here!!"
As the Raiders QB revealed during a 2015 press conference, he has studied Bryant for years as part of his Lakers' fandom and as a competitor. He wants to capture that Mamba mentality whenever he takes the field and use it to find success with the Raiders. The team doesn't always win, but Carr approaches every game with that mentality.
Interestingly enough, he actually campaigned for Bryant to come back and serve as the leader of the Lakers following Magic Johnson surprisingly quitting mid-season. Carr felt that the 18-time all-star was the perfect man to serve as president of basketball operations.0comments
The respect was mutual, as it turns out. Bryant sent a message of encouragement to Carr back in 2016 after the quarterback suffered a season-ending broken fibula. "Come back better than ever," Bryant wrote in a Twitter message.
(Photo Credit: Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)