Kobe Bryant Stars in New Commercial with Lionel Messi, Gets Licked by Lion


We’re just days away from the much-heralded return of Kobe Bryant to game action, but let’s be honest: Kobe Bryant never really goes away. Even after he’s long retired, Kobe will continue to have an impact on the average sports fan; he’s simply an indelible part of popular culture at this point, regardless of what he does as a basketball player from this day forward. He’s a globetrotting superstar, and in a brand new commercial for Turkish Airlines, he’s out to prove it, alongside soccer great Lionel Messi.

Via Sportando.net:

That’s a ton of selfies, to be sure, and of course Kobe’s taking a handful of his with some of the most dangerous animals on Earth. Kobe swims with sharks and gets licked on the face by leonine kings of the jungle. That’s just who he is.

But the commercial saves the best moment for last, with Kobe photobombing Messi in Istanbul, Turkey. Whether active or still on the injured list, it’s an NBA player’s sworn duty to photobomb (or videobomb) whenever possible; Kobe does that fine tradition proud with his inclusion of himself in one of Messi’s selfies.

Andrew Lynch

When God Shammgod created the basketball universe, Andrew Lynch was there. His belief in the superiority of advanced statistics and the eventual triumph of expected value-based analytics stems from the fact that he’s roughly as old as the concept of counting. With that said, he still loves the beauty of basketball played at the highest level — it reminds him of the splendor of the first Olympics — and the stories that spring forth from the games, since he once beat Homer in a game of rock-paper-scissors over a cup of hemlock. Dude’s old.