One of the last photos of Los Angeles Lakers star, Kobe Bryant came from his own facility, the Mamba Academy. Brady Smigiel, 13, was at the Mamba Academy on Saturday when he was able to get a selfie with Bryant. Brady was there to play a game while Bryant was coaching his 13-year old daughter, Gianna. After Bryant finished coaching the first game, Brady went up to him and asked to take a photo.
"Kobe gave him knuckles, and Brady said 'he wasn't in the mood to talk because they lost,'" Brady's mother, Dionne Smigiel, said to the New York Post.
13yo Brady Smigiel took these selfies @MambaSportsHQ on Saturday. Brady says as #KobeBryant was leaving the training facility, he promised to take a picture w/him & his friends on Sunday. Hear from Brady & young athletes from Mamba Sports Academy. It reopened today. @CBSLA 6pm pic.twitter.com/tEQ2mCDoKx— Rachel Kim (@CBSLARachel) January 30, 2020
After the second game, Brady went up to Bryant and asked to take a photo with him. Bryant told Brady he will get him on Sunday.
"I was up, and I saw his car pull up right over here, and I was like, 'Kobe could I get a quick picture with a couple of my friends,'" Brady said to CBS Los Angeles. "And he was like, 'I'll get you tomorrow. You play here?' And I was like, 'Yeah,' and then he just walked out. I got that blurry picture, and then he walked out and got in the car."
Brady still was able to take a couple of selfies with Bryant as he was walking away. And when the news broke about Bryant and Gianna being two of the nine victims in a fatal helicopter crash, Brady said he will keep the photos for the rest of his life.
"I'm keeping those forever as long as I can," he said. "I'm showing them to all my friends and family, so if anything happened to my phone or my family's phones, I have it somewhere. It's just so special to me."
Bryant played for the Lakers from 1996-2016 and left the game as one of the all-time greats. During his time with the Lakers, Bryant led the team to five NBA championships, he was named to the All-Star team 18 times and he was named the MVP in 2008.