The BTM e-book report: "Kobe: Life Classes from a Legend"

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About the book
title: Kobe: Life Lessons From a Legend
author: Nelson Peña
length: 144 pages (hardcover)
editor: Castle Point books
Copyright year: 2021

In a world of elite athletes, Kobe Bryant has transcended his own sport to become synonymous with greatness. In Kobe: Life Lessons from a Legend, writer Nelson Peña explores some of the mental tools, work ethic habits, and attitudes that helped Kobe Bryant become a dominant force in the NBA. From his off-court problems to his early love for the game, Peña describes how Kobe took almost any setback or success and used it as motivation.

From the beginning, Kobe loved basketball. He dreamed big and declared when he lived in Italy as a child that one day he would play in the NBA. Since he discovered his passion so early, he took a long-term approach to his development. Early in high school, he was a low-ranking candidate. Knowing he didn't have to be the top candidate until a few years later, he made it a point to improve his weaknesses by studying those on the list that were above him. He also used it as a motivation to outperform other top prospects when facing them in a game.

Kobe Bryant was a figurehead of self improvement. Not only did he want to climb up the prospect list and become an all-time star, he loved the improvement process too. He was as tireless in his pursuit of improvement as he was on the pitch during the games. After a notorious game where he fired multiple air balls in clutch situations, he diagnosed the problem – leg fatigue – and embarked on a new training program in the off-season to build strength and endurance. He could also look outside the box for answers. For example, he took tap dancing classes to strengthen his ankles so he would miss less time with rolled ankles.

Despite his reputation for being arrogant and difficult to coach, he regularly sought advice from experts. In an example from the book, the author tells a story of a young Kobe Bryant harassing Michael Jordan during a game. During the breaks, he asked about the firing angle of Michael's famous jump shot and tried to find out what he could from someone else …

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