The 2016 NBA season will be remembered for many reasons. It ended with one of the greatest comebacks in NBA Finals history, as Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers came back from a 3-1 deficit to win the first title in team history.

Bryant warming up before a regular season game. (Wikipedia Public Domain)

Bryant warming up before a regular season game. (Wikipedia Public Domain)

Steph Curry and the Warriors broke multiple records, most remarkable of which was the 73-9 record in the regular season.

For those basketball fans that have been around for a while, the end of the 2016 season was a reminder of just how quickly time passes. Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan, and Kevin Garnett all decided to retire. The three combined for 11 championships, each dominating the league at one point during the last 20 years. Although all three of them will enter the Hall of Fame as soon as they become eligible, there will always be a debate as to which one was the best.

The easiest and most effective case can be made for Bryant. His stats are impressive, he has the rings, and he played a very exciting style of basketball, filled with highlight reel plays and mind blowing performances.

Here is a short history of the Black Mamba’s greatness.