Footage Of Kobe Bryant's Final Season 'In Editing Stages' For Potential Documentary
Los Angeles Lakers star Bryant, who tragically died earlier this year, had his last season with the team heavily filmed, as reported by ESPN. This echoes the footage shot during Jordan's 1997-98 season with the Chicago Bulls, which went on to form the backbone of The Last Dance.
John Black, who was head of the Lakers' PR department for almost 30 years, spoke about the crew who captured the extensive footage of Bryant's final season.
He said: "They had unprecedented and, by far, greater access than anyone else ever.
"We certainly allowed them to do everything we could within what the league would allow, and sometimes, with a wink and look-the-other-way, allowed them even more."
He retired from the NBA after the 2015-16 season, which was his 20th.
ESPN also claims to have learned that footage for the potential documentary has been in 'the editing stages', but isn't set to be released until 'years from now'. It is currently unclear as to when that is likely to be.
Bryant had seen some of the edited material and had given feedback in the months before he died.
The Hall of Famer was tragically killed in a helicopter crash on 26 January, along with 13-year-old daughter Gianna Bryant and seven other people.
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The 41-year-old's death came just hours after he toasted fellow NBA icon and current Laker LeBron James, who had just overtaken him on the league's all-time scoring list to take up third place.
Continuing to move the game forward @KingJames. Much respect my brother :muscle: #33644
- Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) January 26, 2020
Bryant was the NBA's Most Valuable Player (MVP) in 2008 and a two-time NBA Finals MVP. He was also two-time NBA scoring champion and a two-time Olympic champion.
After leaving the sport, he went on to win an Oscar for the best short animated film in 2018. Dear Basketball is a five-minute long film based on a love letter to the sport he wrote in the Players' Tribune in 2015.
As the world mourned his death, footage of his legendary performance in his final match was shared online.
The final three minutes of the game between Los Angeles Lakers and Utah Jazz show the 41-year-old's sporting skill in his retirement game after 20 seasons in 2016.
In the match, Kobe played 42 minutes and took a career-high of 50 shots, making the match the fifth highest-scoring game of his career. He became the oldest player to score 50 points in an NBA game.
The footage of the final three minutes shows a sweating Bryant continually making pass after pass and scoring to bring his team an improbable comeback victory - and would likely be included as part of the documentary.
Featured Image Credit: PA
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