Vanessa Bryant shared some sweet words of support for her husband Kobe decision to retire from basketball on Monday. The player has announced that the 2015-16 NBA season will be his last.
The wife of the Los Angeles Lakers star uploaded an Instagram photo with a touching caption telling of her pride, but the 33-year-old has made her Instagram account private since.
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Vanessa and Kobe have been married since 2001
"You can walk away knowing you've always played with everything you have, babe. I'm so proud of you. I'm proud of everything you've given to all of your fans even when you weren't feeling your best," she wrote.
"You've always pushed through it because you played for those fans that sacrificed so much to see you play in person. You mean so much to us all. I'm so excited to see what God has in store for us as a family now that one chapter is closing and new ones are opening. We love you!"
The basketball legend has two daughters with his wife Vanessa
The basketball legend will now have more time to spend with his wife and children. The happy couple married in 2001 and have two daughters together, Natalia, 12 and nine-year-old Gianna.
It wasn't just Vanessa who commented on Kobe's retirement. Other celebrities, including Gigi Hadid and Justin Timberlake took to social media to express their sadness at his departure and wish him well.
The two-time Olympic gold medallist has scored 32,683 points during a 20-year career with the LA Lakers and is ranked third on the NBA's all-time list. Kobe, 37, who has suffered several injuries in recent seasons, told The Players' Tribune: "My body knows it's time to say goodbye."
In a poem entitled Dear Basketball, the father-of-two announced: "This season is all I have left to give," he added: "You gave a six-year-old boy his Laker dream. And I'll always love you for it. But I can't love you obsessively for much longer."
The Philadelphia-born sports star ended the poem by saying: "We both know, no matter what I do next, I'll always be that kid, with the rolled up socks, garbage can in the corner, :05 seconds on the clock, ball in my hands," he wrote. "We're all sad."
During Kobe's illustrious career he has been selected for the NBA All-Star team on 17 occasions, played in a total of 1,293 NBA matches and won Olympic gold with the United States in 2008 and 2012.