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Kobe Bryant discusses what he wants to teach D'Angelo Russell

The art of understanding "why" is lost, but Kobe Bryant wants to make sure his newest pupil is ready to ask the right questions.

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant sat down with ESPN's Jemele Hill during BET's Genius Talks in Downtown LA for a livestreamed interview. Throughout the engaging interview Kobe was his unfiltered self, telling anecdotes about his past, personal life and more. Hill came around to the direction of the Lakers as the move forward following the draft and asked Kobe what he hopes to teach D'Angelo Russell as he begins his NBA career.

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"The biggest thing for a young player now is to ask why," Bryant said. Kobe went on to elaborate his thought, expressing concern about players being told what to do and how to do it without understanding why it's happening. Instead, he hopes to get Russell and any young talent around him "thinking about why things happen." What good is knowing a simple task but not understanding the process that makes it work? That's the key, at least in Kobe's view.

This is an interesting detail, especially when considering Julius Randle spent time watching film with Kobe while they were both rehabilitating injuries during the season. The Black Mamba won't always be there to direct these up-and-coming players, but if he can impart the knowledge of understanding that why, his impact with them could be invaluable well beyond his playing days.

Perhaps Kobe has already started oiling the gears of Randle's mind, which is a happy thought for a rebuilding Lakers team. Russell has the natural talent and feel for the game and already expressed his desire to learn from the five-time NBA champion. If he can soak in whatever it is that Bryant has to lay down for his young padawan before he makes his exit, that could be a huge boost in his development and for the Lakers.