Kobe Bryant, ‘Sports Illustrated’ Announce ‘Dear Basketball’ Project Partnership

Retired Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant captivated many with his "Dear Basketball" poem for the Players' Tribune last year, and it will soon come to life in conjunction with Sports Illustrated.

According to SI.com, Kobe and Sports Illustrated will collaborate on a multiplatform video project based on the poem in which Bryant initially announced his retirement.

The Black Mamba will narrate a short film entitled Dear Basketball for SI.com in the fall, and mini-documentaries will also be produced as part of the project.

Per SI.com, the Dear Basketball project is something Bryant holds near and dear to his heart: "Dear Basketball is the perfect tribute to something I've loved for so long. Working with Sports Illustrated on this special project is an amazing opportunity to hopefully inspire fans all over the world."

Rich Battista, president of Time Inc. Entertainment and Sports Group and Video, shared Kobe's excitement:

We are proud to collaborate with Kobe to tell the comprehensive story of his first endeavor after retiring from the NBA in a way that only SI can. We are excited for Kobe's fans and the global community of sport, entertainment and art enthusiasts to experience these productions.

Kobe—a five-time champion and 18-time All-Star—has long been known as one of the most committed and passionate athletes in the world. His passion was clear in his poem as he said farewell to the game of basketball, and his on-court goodbye couldn't have been scripted any better.

Although the 37-year-old endured a difficult 20th season with the 17-65 Lakers, he went out on a high note by dropping 60 points against the Utah Jazz in his final game.


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