When Kobe Bryant entered the NBA in 1996, he wore number 8 jersey. This was the case until the 2006-2007 season when the Lakers legend switched to number 24.
The official story is that Bryant wanted to the number 24 jersey as rookie because that was his first highschool jersey number from. Since it was unavailable he went with number 8.
But according to former NBA star Kevin Garnett, Kobe chose number 24 as a statement that he is above 23, the jersey number of Michael Jordan.
“People don’t even understand that was a sign to everybody that he was a step above 23… That was a shot at Mike. Straight up,” KG said, via ClutchPoints.