Jayson Tatum honors late mentor Kobe Bryant with unique '24' tattoo design

·1-min read

Jayson Tatum is among the numerous basketball players and celebrities who have honored the late Kobe Bryant with new tattoos. 

The Boston Celtics forward's look is a unique one that incorporates a black mamba snake into Bryant's iconic "24." It's on the side crease of his left knee. 

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Tatum, 23, is back training after winning a gold medal with the Team USA men's basketball squad at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. He wore No. 10, the number Bryant wore for USA Basketball and had on when the team won gold in 2008 and 2012. 

“With this being the first Olympics since we lost him, it holds that much more value,” Tatum said ahead of the Games, via the Associated Press. “It’s not something I take lightly.

“I remember that first team when I was hoping, wishing, that I got No. 10,” Tatum said. “Kobe, everyone knows that was my favorite player. I was 15 years old and got to wear the number of my favorite player. It just felt like I had some level of connection with him.”

Tatum has called Bryant, who died in a helicopter crash in January of 2020, his hero as a kid and later his mentor when he made it to the NBA. They first met in 2016 when Tatum was named the Gatorade Nationals Boys Player of the Year and the two attended the ESPYs. He has recreated the iconic Bryant pose on the cover of SLAM Magazine in 2018 and that summer they worked out together. 

Now he has a way to visibly honor his hero and mentor forever. 

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