Back in 2015, former Los Angeles Laker, Rick Fox, told TMZ that he believed the Lakers would eventually raise both of Kobe Bryant's jersey numbers to the rafters after he retired. His prediction proved to be true when the team announced this week that they would be retiring both Kobe's No. 8 and No. 24 jerseys.

The ceremony will take place on December 18, when the Lakers take on the defending champion Golden State Warriors.

The jersey retirement for Kobe comes just two seasons after he played his last game for the franchise he spent his entire NBA career with.

The Los Angeles Lakers signed Kobe during the 1996 NBA Draft via trade. Bryant was initially drafted by the Charlotte Hornets but the Lakers did not want to miss out on getting the guy that they felt would be the future of the franchise.

Bryant had a very successful high school career at Lower Merion High School in Pennsylvania.

His talent was good enough for him to skip out on college and go straight to the pros. For the first 10 seasons of his NBA career, Kobe sported the #8 but decided to switch to the #24 later in his career. He was able to achieve high levels of success while wearing both numbers.

Success wearing the No. 8

While sporting the No. 8, Kobe was able to win three championships while playing alongside Hall of Fame center Shaquille O'Neal.

Like his idol Michael Jordan, Bryant spent valuable time under coach Phil Jackson. He was voted to the all-star game in his 2nd season and also was able to win his first and only slam dunk contest that same year.

Four seasons later, he would win the first of three straight NBA titles. During the Lakers three-peat from 2000-02, Kobe was able to close games out for the team but was never awarded the Finals MVP trophy during those three seasons.

Also, in 2003, he was accused of rape and eventually had to settle with the alleged victim outside of court. After that, Kobe was ready to lead his own team and finally get out of the shadow of O'Neal. As a result, the team decided to part ways with the big guy and Bryant made the switch to # 24 shortly after.

Making the switch to #24

It didn't take long for Kobe to began calling himself the "Black Mamba" after changing his jersey number from 8 to 24.

He became more eager to stake his own claim and kill all of the talk about him not being able to win a title without Shaq. While sporting the No. 24, Kobe averaged about three more points than he did wearing the No. 8. He also won his first and only MVP trophy in the year of 2008. The next two seasons after, he would lead the Lakers to win two consecutive NBA titles and was finally crowned Finals MVP in both of those appearances.

Although he won more titles wearing the No. 8, he gained more respect while wearing the No. 24. His numbers were slightly better and he did not need to share the spotlight with another superstar. His five rings fell one short of his idol Michael Jordan but it's safe to say he was the closest thing to the great MJ that NBA fans have ever seen. So, it should be no surprise that both numbers will be retired now that his career is finished. He dominated while sporting them both.

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