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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

Kobe Bryant Announces His Retirement

He is the only player in NBA history to play 20 seasons with one team.

Los Angeles Lakers fans are expressing their sentiments towards star player Kobe Bryant after he announced that he will be retiring at the end of this season. In the form of a poem, Bryant poetically stated that this will be his last season with the team. 

"My heart can handle the pounding/My mind can handle the grind/But my body knows it's time to say goodbye," Bryant said. 

Bryant retires as the only player in NBA history to play 20 seasons with one team. USC professor of sports, business and media Jeff Fellenzer said this action may open the door for the team to do more for free agents. 

"They can look at offering a great contract to premium free agents who now know that the touch will be passed," Fellenzer said. "Whoever comes in will have the chance to inherit the mantle from Kobe and really be the backbone of Laker franchise."

Bryant's announcement also sparked a rise in ticket prices. If fans want to catch his final games, they will now have to pay big dollars to see him play. Ticket prices for the Laker games rose 240% just hours after his announcement. As of this morning, prices range from a low of $571 to a pricey $21,000 to sit in the lower bowl of the arena. 

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