Kobe Bryant had a special place in his heart for Latinos — something we are sure his wife Vanessa, who is of Mexican descent, helped foster over throughout their relationship. In order to speak to his beloved wife’s family, the former L.A. Lakers player took it upon himself to learn the Spanish language. But he didn’t do it with teachers or fancy courses, Kobe started watching Spanish telenovelas! In an interview from two years ago, you can hear the father-of-four speaking Español to perfection!
“Watching novelas with Vanessa, my wife, as well as my mother-in-law,” explained the five-time NBA Champion when asked whether he spoke Spanish. He revealed that one of his favorites telenovelas was La Madrastra, with Mexican acting royalty Victoria Ruffo and César Évora, kept him glued to the TV.
The dramatic stories weren’t the only things that caught the 41-year-old’s attention, he also enjoyed watching the iconic Sábado Gigante starring the legendary Chilean host Don Francisco. “[I also learned Spanish] watching Sábado Gigante as well,” Kobe, who along with his 13-year-old daughter Gianna lost their lives on January 26 in a helicopter crash, revealed with a proud smile.
Kobe Bryant: the multi-linguist
Although the Spanish language had a special place in his heart, Kobe also spoke Italian along with English. However, the former NBA player surprised everyone at the end of 2019 during a game between his team the L.A. Lakers and the Dallas Mavericks when he popped up speaking yet another language.
While on the court, Dallas Mavericks player Luka Dončić did a double take when he heard Kobe speaking his native language. “He was speaking Slovenian. He was speaking my language. It took me by surprise,” explained the excited Slovenian transplant during a press conference. Minutes after the memorable moment, Luka posed with Kobe’s daughter Gianna, who was also on the helicopter with him.