Let’s take it back to the 1996 NBA Draft. The then Charlotte Hornets selected a young, 18 year old, Kobe Bryant, straight out of high school with the 13th overall pick. After being drafted, Kobe was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers where he becomes a superstar. Fast forward 15 years, five rings, one MVP, one gold medal, 13 all-star game selections, four all-star MVPs, two Finals MVPs, and one rape accusation later, and we’re in the 2011 NBA Playoffs where Bryant and his Lakers were swept by the Dallas Mavericks. Kobe has been one of the greatest basketball players in the history of the sport, but he’s in the final chapter of his Hall of Fame career. While Kobe’s book closes, we’ve already begun the LeBron James era, one that I think won’t be on the same level as Kobe’s. The newest superstar to the NBA though, one who’s reign is only beginning, is the Chicago Bulls point guard, Derrick Rose.
After beating the Pacers in the first round 4 games to 1, the Bulls are now in the second round of the playoffs where they just won game 3 vs the Atlanta Hawks 99-82. Derrick Rose scored a career high 44 points in the win and the Bulls lead the Hawks 2 games to 1 in the series. Rose’s 44 point outburst came just days after being named the league’s MVP for the 2010-2011 season, the youngest player to ever win the award. LBJ is good and Kobe’s been great, but could Derrick Rose end up better than both when his career is all said and done? I think so, but either way I don’t think anyone will be disappointed watching him play while they wait and see.