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    11 Things You Might Not Have Known About Kobe Bryant

    Kobe Bryant and Kobe beef have more in common than you'd think.

    1. Kobe seriously pursued a rap career, which culminated with a single appropriately titled "K.O.B.E."

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    And yes, that's Tyra Banks singing the hook.

    2. He speaks fluent Italian.

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    As well as conversational French and Serbian.

    3. It's well known that he was the first guard in NBA history to be drafted straight out of high school, but he was first drafted to the Hornets, not the Lakers.

    4. Kobe took R&B singer Brandy to his high school prom.

    5. Yes, Kobe's parents named him after Japanese beef.

    6. And his middle name is Bean.

    7. Kobe wears a brand new pair of kicks at every game.

    8. Despite wearing jersey numbers 24 and 33 in high school, Kobe chose 8 when he entered the pros for a number of personal reasons.

    9. When 24 became available, he famously switched jerseys.

    10. He sometimes passes the ball to himself and believes it should count as an assist as well as a basket.

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    It doesn't not make sense...

    11. He considers himself a normal guy, just like you and me! (lol).

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    With the small exception that he is the youngest player to score 30,000 points, youngest winner of the slam dunk contest, youngest starting All-Star, five-time NBA champion, four-time MVP, seasoned Olympian, etc. etc. etc.