What makes poker and basketball similar? Just like every competitive game, both take a lot of dedication and hard work to achieve results. The best basketball players and best poker players spend every moment of their lives thinking about playing the game and getting better at it.
On the other hand, both poker and basketball have the element of luck to them. Sometimes we shoot and score every three-pointer. Sometimes, we just miss the entire basket.
Sadly, Kobe Bryant failed to score the most important point of his life and was killed in a helicopter crash, along with his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven other passengers on Sunday. They were all traveling to Gianna’s basketball game using the helicopter.
Was Bryant ever connected to poker? In a way, yes. Although he never played, he announced one of the events in the World Series of Poker to honor the memory of Jerry Buss, who was the owner of the Los Angeles Lakers and Kobe’s good friend.
Nevertheless, the poker community was devastated by Bryant’s death. Kobe represented a true fighting spirit. The “Mamba mentality” was something that could be applied to a wide variety of games, including poker.
Who Mourned The Black Mamba?
Numerous poker players around the world expressed their condolences about the passing of the basketball legend. One of the first people to do it was the Godfather of Poker himself — Doyle Brunson. Brunson stated on his Twitter that there were no guarantees and concluded the tweet with “RIP Kobe.”
Another living legend of poker, Daniel Negreanu, was very emotional in his Twitter, stating that the event had been “truly tragic.” The six-time WSOP bracelet winner stated that he had never met Kobe, but that he had “cried for him and his family.”
Allen Kessler also offered condolences and even shared a post of the Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood lit with the colors of the Lakers — purple and yellow.
Doug Polk also had a tweet about the passing of the basketball legend. He stated that he loved watching the Lakers as a kid and that Kobe was part of that legendary team.
Joey Ingram has been very busy with posting entertaining video content related to Phil Galfond’s challenge. He, too, took a break from that to share his thoughts, stating that life was “too short to get bogged down and be discouraged.”
Apart from initial inspirational quotes, Ingram also shared his love for Kobe, saying that Bryant has inspired him so much with his approach to family, basketball, business, and more. In fact, Joey made a screenshot of Bryant’s Instagram, stating that every post was supportive and paying respect to someone.
Bryant was indeed one of the greatest athletes in the world, and many will miss him for a long time. He has left a legacy in basketball, inspiring millions of kids around the world to take the ball, get out, and start playing ball with their friends. Some of those kids are now NBA players.
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