Kobe Bryant Prenup: Divorce from Vanessa Bryant Will Ignite Black Mamba

Justin Welton@JustinWeltonAnalyst IIDecember 17, 2011

LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 31:  Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers reacts after his basket and a foul in a 110-82 win over the Dallas Mavericks at Staples Center on March 31, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

If there is one thing that Kobe Bryant excels at the highest level it's shutting people up. He loves and cherishes being the “villain” and has battled through extremely difficult times in his NBA career, always coming out on top.

His divorce will only be a chip that will be placed on the shoulder of the Black Mamba. He’ll use this as fuel for a bounce-back season for the Los Angeles Lakers.

People hate Bryant and they always have. Yet what makes him so great is the fact that he doesn’t care. Fans boo him in his hometown of Philadelphia, Pa, but he loves sticking it to the 76ers every time he returns home. 

We have seen it time-and-time again throughout Bryant’s 15-year career. People couldn’t stand the way he played the game of basketball. People couldn’t stand him after the Shaquille O’Neal fallout and people couldn’t stand him for what happened in Colorado in 2003.

He doesn’t care. It’s what he takes pride in.

I will be the first one to admit that this is going to be the toughest challenge of his NBA career. Divorce is never easy, especially on the children (Natalia, 8 and Gianna, 5), but it’s going to be extra difficult around the holiday season.

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NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 14:  Kobe Bryant  arrives for a press conference after National Basketball Players Association  met to discuss the current CBA offer at Westin Times Square on November 14, 2011 in New York City.  (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty I
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But basketball will be his getaway from all the troubles of splitting time with his children, not being around his ex-wife and many other things. Hopefully, for the sake of the league, we don’t see a downward spiral to the likes of Tiger Woods.

I can’t see that happening. Maybe it could if this was five years from now and Bryant was 38 instead of 33. But not now.

Bryant is still one of the best, if not the best player in the league. People love to hinge on one season and make an overblown assumption that he’s well-past his prime.

LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 12:  Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers celebrates his basket during a 102-93 win over the San Antonio Spurs at the Staples Center on April 12, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and
Harry How/Getty Images

Give me a break.

Could we at least wait until this year is through to determine whether or not he is or isn’t the best player in the NBA? I mean the guy did go to back-to-back-to-back NBA Finals.

He’s deserving of at least one more year of consideration before people pull the rug from underneath him.

The guy is still playing at an extremely high level. He recorded 25.3 points, 4.7 assists and 5.1 rebounds in 2010-11.

It will be different this season. He has finally received more time off of basketball in the past several months than any other time in a handful of years. He will be completely rested from the game.

I understand that he has played 1,103 career regular season games, I understand that he has knee issues and now we see what is going on in his home life, but I think he’s ready to use this motivation as fuel on the basketball court for the upcoming season.

Who knows, maybe we will even see a more motivated, more determined Black Mamba. Could that even be possible?

That’s a scary thought.