Kobe Bryant is one of the greatest NBA players of his generation — a fact he evidently knew from Day 1.
Legendary head coach Phil Jackson, owner of 11 NBA championship rings and former mentor to both Bryant and Michael Jordan, was a guest on FOX Sports Live this week, and the Zen Master shared an interesting anecdote about one of Bryant’s first seasons in the league.
Jackson recalled an instance in 1999, when he was head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers. After a Lakers game in Chicago, Jackson brought in his future superstar to get a few pointers from Jordan, who was a year into his second retirement at the time.
Bryant was far from starstruck from the soon-to-be Hall of Famer, though.
“The first thing Kobe says [to Jordan] is, ‘I could kick your [butt] 1-on-1,’” Jackson said.
Kobe might have been able to take down a 36-year-old MJ, but would he have been able to beat Jordan in his prime? Jackson doesn’t think so.
“It’s gotta be MJ,” he said.
To hear Jackson’s story, check out the video below.