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    1996 Topps Chrome Kobe Bryant (Refractor) #138 PSA Gem Mint 10. Kobe Bryant and basketball were entwined from the beginning. The son of long-time NBA player Joe "Jellybean" Bryant, Kobe was born in Philadelphia and later starred at nearby Lower Merion High School. He averaged 30.8 points a game in high school and was the nation's premier college prospect, but Kobe decided to turn pro, and after a draft-connected deal, wound up with the Los Angeles Lakers as an 18-year-old rookie. At 6'6", he played small forward for two years and then moved to shooting guard, which he played for most of his career. Within a few more years, he had established himself as a superstar. Bryant played all his career with Los Angeles, winning five NBA championships. He led the NBA in scoring in four seasons, was an 18-time All-Star, 15-time All-NBA team, 12-times All-NBA Defense Team, 2008 NBA MVP and a two-time NBA Finals MVP. The final vision of Bryant in a purple and gold uniform occurred on April 13, 2016. Outside the arena before the game against the Utah Jazz on that day, fans had chanted, "Ko-be! Ko-be!" The Lakers' legend went on to score a spectacular 60 points in that farewell NBA game. Bryant, whom Magic Johnson referred to in the pregame ceremony as the greatest Laker, finished the evening with "Mamba out" -- a reference to his nickname, "The Black Mamba" -- a kiss and a literal mic drop.

    Graded PSA Gem Mint 10. Kobe Bryant was still entwined in basketball at the tragic conclusion of his life in the January 26, 2020 crash of a helicopter. Kobe, his daughter Gianna, and seven others were headed from Orange County on their way to Gianna's basketball game in Newbury Park, at which Kobe was going to coach her team, and all perished in the accident. This 1996 Topps Chrome Refractor is the most sought-after Kobe Bryant rookie card ever. The card front presents a stirring Bryant drive towards the hoop. The rare refractor variations are far fewer than the same base card.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    December, 2020
    10th-13th Thursday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 36
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 2,093

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    20% of the successful bid (minimum $14) per lot.

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