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Kobe Bryant Used to Memorize Jay Z’s Albums in Less Than 24 Hours

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Over the last 20 years, Kobe Bryant has accomplished some truly amazing things in his illustrious career. But despite being named to 18 NBA All-Star teams, earning 11 All-NBA First Team selections and scoring more points than any Lakers’ player in history, Kobe can add a new unique achievement to his resume

And, according to one story from Kobe’s former teammate, Brian Shaw he is a Jay-Z superfan.

“I always tell people this story when they ask me about Kobe. We would always freestyle on the back of the bus. Whenever a new Jay-Z album came out, it was a big deal. Guys would get it Day One and be rapping their favorite songs. Maybe they knew the first few bars or the hook. Well, Kobe would be on the back of the bus, rapping every single line of every single song the day after the album came out. I’m talking every lyric. It was genuinely amazing. Nobody could figure out how it was possible.”

Shaw said the entire Lakers team struggled to figure out how Kobe—the guy who was focused on basketball 24/7—had time to memorize all of Hov’s words.

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Devean George, another former teammate, confirmed Kobe’s obsession with memorizing every single lyric possible.

“It was incredible. It didn’t make sense. I was always wondering, How in the world is this guy learning the lyrics so quickly? We’re all buying this stuff right when it comes out. We’re all listening to it. I don’t know the lyrics yet. How do you? It just came out 24 hours ago, bro!

George also added – I would picture him sitting up all night with his headphones on, scribbling the lyrics over and over in a notebook like my kids do when they study for an English test. The damn album just came out yesterday, and he knows it front to back.

“That’s when I realized; maybe this guy is a genius. Either that, or he was getting Jay to send him to advance copies. Either way, that’s a little window into Kobe. He was obsessed with greatness.”

It’s pretty amazing that a guy who lives eats sleeps and breathes basketball had time to listen to them enough to know every single word in a day. 

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