Derrin Horton Goes One on One with Kobe Bryant

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“You have to be positive, you have to be optimistic and I have always been that way, I was raised that way,” says Kobe Bryant.

It’s hard to imagine basketball without the great number 24.

Ever since Kobe Bryant first put on the purple and gold back in August of 1996, the mighty sting of the Black Mamba has been felt throughout the NBA.

But this season, the game changed as the clock dwindled down with just three minutes and ten seconds left against the Golden State Warriors.

In typical Kobe character, the injured Laker guard hobbled to the free throw line to sink two baskets and tie the game — but could the painful play cost the five-time NBA champion his career?

“I’d much rather hear people say well I don’t know if he will be able to retire gracefully because then I can take that as a challenge,” Kobe says.

Though after our KTLA one-on-one exclusive, the 35-year-old was seemingly in the midst of a social media melt down.

In a Facebook flare-up, the father furiously typing, “This is such b-s! All the training and sacrifice just flew out the window with one step that I’ve done a million times!”

Next a Twitter tantrum — tweeting, “Random tears of devastation and doubt” with the startling hash-tag “Vicodin-tweets, plus another hash-tag of “high as a kite.”

And finally a case of the Facebook blues,  with the All-Star joining skeptics questioning if he will ever slam dunk again.

He posted, “Maybe I should break out the rocking chair and reminisce on the career that was. Maybe this is how my book ends. Maybe father time has defeated me.”

When asked what his plans are after basketball, Kobe answers, “The key is finding something that you’re passionate about.”

In the game of life, there may not be a referee calling the shots, but after taking a time out with Kobe, i’s clear, the full court press is on.

“The time is definitely ticking,” Kobe says.

— Kimberly McWatt, KTLA News

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