When we’re talking about Kobe Bryant, it’s foolish not to discuss his superhuman-like work ethic. We’ve heard tons of stories of Kobe showing up several hours earlier than his trainer or his teammates. Giannis Antetokounmpo obviously heard all the stories as well. But this time, it was the Greek Freak who got ahead of the Black Mamba.
Kobe shared his side of the story of his workout with Giannis. According to Bryant, Giannis was obsessed with all sorts of details that he even had a notepad and diligently jotted down whatever the Mamba said. And so Bryant wasn’t surprised by the Bucks forward’s rise to superstardom.
Giannis shared his side of the story as well. According to him, he was already sweating it out in the gym three hours before Kobe arrived. Antetokounmpo decided to let Kobe know that he beat him to the gym.
“I was there three hours before him. He didn’t know that I was there three hours before him. So when the workout was done, I told him, ‘I beat you to the gym.’ He was like ‘Ha Ha.’ I don’t think he heard what I was saying so I repeated it. ‘I beat you to the gym, three hours earlier.’ I think he tried to avoid what I told him,” Antetokounmpo said.
This may be one of those rare instances where Kobe was defeated in practice. During his stints with Team USA, not even the likes of LeBron James and Dwyane Wade could outwork him. Chris Bosh once shared that he saw Bryant already icing his knees up during breakfast. While everyone was sleeping, Bryant was already putting in the work.
Like Kobe, Giannis also has a predilection for mind games as well. His workout with Kobe is a prime example of Antetokounmpo’s willingness to compete in every possible instance. It seemed like a trivial pursuit. But Giannis knows how Kobe’s mind works.
During the COVID lockdown in 2020, Giannis shared that he has no access to a basketball court and so his training options are limited. Later on, he revealed that he did have access to a court. He lied because he wanted to play with his opponents’ minds.
Like Kobe, Giannis is becoming the epitome of hard work and dedication. Before he became this dominant force, Giannis was a young, unknown kid from Greece with NBA dreams. His first few years in the league were decent but didn’t raise eyebrows. But slowly and surely, Giannis rose to the NBA ranks. And now, there’s no denying he’s one of the best.