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How a simple Kobe Bryant gesture changed Spencer Dinwiddie’s life

Spencer Dinwiddie went through a lot in his career but a simple remark from his idol Kobe Bryant kept him going.
How a simple Kobe Bryant gesture changed Spencer Dinwiddie’s life

Kobe Bryant told Dinwiddie he was playing like an All-Star after watching him erupt for 39 points.

Spencer Dinwiddie has found a home in Dallas Mavericks this season. He’s become a solid contributor to the team, but he wouldn’t be as successful now without Kobe Bryant’s message to him years ago.

“Playing like an All-Star”

Dinwiddie had the best season of his career in the 2019-2020 season when he averaged 20.6 points as a member of the Brooklyn Nets. Many expected him to be an All-Star that time, but unfortunately, he didn’t get voted as a starter or reserve. He may have fallen short, but he earned the respect of his peers, including Kobe Bryant, who told him he was playing like an All-Star after watching him erupt for 39 points. Dinwiddie knew his idol was watching, so he decided to put on a show. That simple remark from Bryant was all the assurance he needed to continue working hard.

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“For him to tell me that, in his book, I’m an All-Star and stuff like that, talk about a popularity contest before and you don’t win things like that when you’re me, so for him to say that, I didn’t need to be selected anymore, because I was an All-Star, you feel me, it’s not just like my family, it was the guy.” via NBA.com

Not getting recognized for your efforts is hard, but someone you look up to saying he appreciates your game is a different level of euphoria and acknowledgment. Suddenly, what the media and fans thought of him didn’t matter; Spencer Dinwiddie was an All-Star in the eyes of one of the greatest ever to play.

Inspired Spencer Dinwiddie

It’s been a rollercoaster ride for the combo guard ever since. When he thought he found a home in Brooklyn, Dinwiddie was sent to the Washington Wizards in a multi-team deal. Dinwiddie was coming off an injury, so his performance in Washington didn’t reach the same height when he was in Brooklyn. So he tried to become a locker room leader, but it rubbed his teammates the wrong way.

Together with Davis Bertans, Dinwiddie soon embarked on a journey to the Dallas Mavericks for Kristaps Porzingis. Many fans felt the Mavs got the wrong end of the deal, but so far, with Dallas still playing in the postseason, the gamble paid off. Spencer’s playmaking skills and clutch shooting proved crucial in games for Dallas. He may not be the solution for all the problems of the Mavericks, but he can help. The 6’5” guard is already setting career-highs in playoff numbers. The team allowed him to become himself, and he is repaying that trust.

Spencer Dinwiddie will be vital for the future of the Mavs as long as he’s playing like an All-Star and continue to believe in himself, just like what Kobe Bryant told him. 

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