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Chinese students honor Kobe with portrait on snowy court

Kobe in snow

This is simply impressive.

We sometimes forget Kobe Bryant is more than just the guy Byron Scott plays more minutes than the young-legged players he is supposed to be developing. He is not just the guy Angelino’s loved and much of the rest of the NBA nation hated but respected. He is a global icon, the first NBA player to really focus on and push into the massive Chinese market (he went there every summer before everyone else, he started his own Chinese-language website and had his own China-based charitable foundation).

Word of Kobe’s retirement had one young artist in China who came up with an amazing tribute on a snow-filled basketball court.

The Los Angeles Times filed a story on it.

Wei Xudong, a sophomore majoring in sculpturing at Beihua University, said he and some classmates were looking for an idea for their next art project when he read the letter from Bryant announcing his retirement.

“I must do something for Kobe,” said Wei. “I always thought he had not decided on retiring from the NBA, maybe he’ll play one more season. Now I know this is the last season I can see him play.”

In a season of what seems to be countless Kobe tributes and outpourings of love, this is unique. Well done, Wei Xudong.

(Hat tip Dan Devine at Ball Don’t Lie)