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Kobe Bryant : Kobe receives a happy 44th birthday and a "I love you" from Vanessa Bryant.

 Kobe receives a happy 44th birthday and a "I love you" from Vanessa Bryant.

On Tuesday, Kobe Bryant would have turned 44. His wife, Vanessa, shared a touching birthday message on Instagram, saying how much she loves and misses him.

In 2009, the year Kobe won his fourth NBA championship and his first NBA Finals MVP award, Vanessa shared a selfie of herself and her NBA legend husband.

You can see Bryant giving Vanessa a bear hug after the game while sporting his 2009 NBA Championship shirt and hat. They were both beaming.

The 40-year-old wished the infant a happy birthday on Tuesday.

It's simple to identify one or two NBA greats who dominated their generation when you look back at the league's past. In fact, you are familiar enough with them to address them by their first name alone.

Larry, Magic, Michael, Bill, Wilt, Kareem, and how could you forget Kobe?

Kobe Bryant was more than simply a basketball player; he was also one of the greatest scorers, leaders, and contributors to the current generation of celebrities that play the sport.

Bryant, the youngest of his family's three children, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on this date in 1978.

Kobe Bryant's family went back to Philadelphia when he was 13 years old after spending the majority of his childhood in Italy since basketball was always in his blood from the minute he was born. His path to basketball fame started right there, particularly while he was a student at Lower Merion High School in Ardmore.

Kobe was chosen by the Charlotte Hornets with the 13th overall pick in the high school draught before being sold on draught night to the Los Angeles Lakers in exchange for Vlade Divac, a player with a track record that Charlotte thought might help them not only win games but also boost attendance.

Well, that was a really bad error!

Kobe Bryant, who played his entire 20-year NBA career with the Lakers, is one of three players in NBA history to have appeared in the All-Star game 18 times during their careers, along with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Magic Johnson. Kobe Bryant ranks fourth in the NBA's all-time scoring list, eighth in career minutes played, and sixth in total field goals made, and he spent all 20 years of his NBA career with the Lakers.

A wonderful advocate for the sport of basketball, Bryant was often compared to Michael Jordan in his early years. Jordan, who is widely regarded as the best player of all time, had just finished dominating the NBA for the previous eight to ten years when Kobe Bryant was selected. In their eight encounters over the four years they spent playing in the NBA together, Kobe defeated Michael five times.

Throughout all of his time in the NBA, Bryant's desire and devotion to improving himself in every game, practise, and off-day stood out more than his propensity for scoring.