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Kobe Bryant’s First Ring

Kobe Bryant would win 5 Championship Rings in his career. His first ring would come in 2000 for his Los Angeles Lakers. The ring in 2000 helped set the tone for his entire career. Learn more about Kobe’s first championship below.


Kobe Bryant was selected by the Charlotte Hornets with the 13 overall pick in the 1996 NBA Draft. Kobe entered the draft straight out of high school. His youth is probably why he went so low in the draft. He was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers right after being drafted by Charlotte.

kobe draft hornets


After four seasons playing for the Magic, Shaquille O’Neal decided to leave Orlando and join the Los Angeles Lakers. With the Lakers, Shaquille would reach new heights as a player and personality. O’Neal’s best years in the league were while wearing the Purple and Gold. Shaq would win three championships in LA, along with three Final’s MVPs. For his entire career in LA, Shaq and Kobe were teammates.

shaq kobe lakers


The Los Angeles Lakers named Phil Jackson their head coach in 1999. Phil Jackson was coming off his tenure coaching the Chicago Bulls, which resulted in 6 Rings. Jackson was able to nurture Bryant’s game and help take it to another level—the same way he did with Michael Jordan when he coached the Chicago Bulls. Kobe and Shaq were able to co-exist long enough to earn three rings together and accomplish the rare three-peat.

kobe phil jackson


With Jackson as their coach, and with Shaq and Kobe in sync, the Lakers would win the first title of the Kobe & Shaq era in 2000. For Kobe, his first championship helped to launch his career. Bryant showed how strong willed and clutch he was when showed up big in the 2000 Finals. Kobe Bryant would win 5 titles in his career. His legacy of winning started in 2000.


- Adam C. Better

kobe first ring