While five-time NBA Champion and Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant captivated fans with his play on the court, he inspired nations with his actions off the court.

Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, 13, were aboard a helicopter that crashed near Calabasas, California on Jan. 26, 2020. The impact of their passing has since been felt worldwide.

Vaughan soccer coach Angelo Ayvazian believes that Bryant’s “Mamba Mentality” is what separated him from other influencers.

“Mamba mentality” is what Bryant described as the infinite want to do better and to find answers to every question life throws at you.

“Kobe Bryant was one of the main reasons I fell in love with basketball and became a coach, his ‘Mamba Mentality’ taught me to always push for more whether I am playing or coaching,” he says.

Ayvazian says that Bryant notoriety proves that he was more than a basketball player. He says that Bryant writing his book “The Mamba Mentality: How I Play” and winning an Oscar for his short film “Dear Basketball” is an example of how his mentality was an inspiration to everyone.

Daniel Cortese, who played for the Saint Joan of Arc Thunder varsity basketball team says he idolized Bryant as a kid.

Cortese says Bryant’s ability to move past legal trouble off the court, his work ethic, shooting form, and his love for the game is what helped him grow as a player himself.

“In terms of mental toughness, Kobe Bryant was my idol. He did whatever he could to focus on winning and the way he led his team was inspirational,” he says.

Bryant’s 81-point performance against the Toronto Raptors was the moment Cortese says he fell in love with Kobe Bryant. He says that Bryant’s determination moved him in a way no other player had.

Cortese recalls how his teammates tried to replicate Bryant’s mentality on the court and his work ethic and attitude off the court.

Media Broadcasting graduate at Seneca College at York University Campus Leonardo Veri says that watching Kobe Bryant is a big reason why he chose his program. Veri says that Bryant has been an inspiration in his life since he was a child.

“It’s fun watching him score 60 points in a game, but when he motivates and inspires the people and the fans around him, that is more than basketball,” he says.

Bryant’s death affected more than the basketball community. Series A’s A.C. Milan held 24 seconds of silence and Toronto’s CN Tower’s lights were purple and gold to honour the man the world called “Black Mamba”.

Veri says despite Bryant being an American NBA player the footprint that he left on today’s culture is something that will live on in every nation.

“It’s a testament to who he was as a person, he was a man who inspired everyone, whether you knew about basketball or not you knew about Kobe Bryant.”