The day has come, the end of an era and therefore the true demise of a dynasty.

Yes, Kobe Bryant will soon be gone.

While this may not be the earth-shattering occurrence to most that it is to me, it still breaks off a portion of the NBA’s beating heart.

This man was basketball, he lived it and breathed it, and while the league struggled through years of “Michaellessness.” Kobe carried the torch.

Think back a number of years. The NBA was in turmoil, as an osh-posh of young talent driven by personal gain flooded rosters, leaving the league with no concept of a team.

Kobe and the Lakers feasted upon these shortcomings, winning titles and dominating with a two-headed monster. Then Shaq disappeared, and what happened? Kobe got even better, enough to foster comparisons to the GOAT.

Kobe was the one and only topic of discussion. You either loved or hated the man and his team, but in no way could you ignore the fire with which he played the position. The games rolled on and Kobe climbed the All-Time scoring list. Year after year he was the Lakers, and year after year they were relevant, literally, because of him.

Then age turned to injury, and injury to ineptness. The will was still there but the ability to stay on the court was stolen from him. Now, the man who never missed a contest couldn’t play in one, and because of that slip his star fell from grace. Because of that disappearance, the NBA had to find a new prodigal son — in steps Lebron James.

Now we are in the midst of another memorial tour. Like The Rolling Stones, Kobe refuses to gather any moss, and since admitting that he, for back of a better description, cannot hang anymore Kobe had his best game of the season, dropping 31 on the Wizards Tuesday night.

Maybe this tour is one we should all grab a ticket to.

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