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Kobe Bryant says he's 'ready to go' before final game with Lakers

Tossing aside the #24 jersey for good.

This is not going to be breaking news to anyone reading this site, but Kobe Bryant will play in his final game with the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday night. The contest will put a bow on his 20-year career with the team, and Bryant will have to find new ways to occupy his time, new targets at which to aim his relentless drive.

For many retirees, much less ones only around midway through their lives, this can be a daunting prospect. Not for Kobe though. The soon to be retired superstar sounded introspective and at peace with his decision to walk away in a new video posted by the NBA.

In the brief video, titled "Exit Interview," Kobe talks about how his goals changed over the course of his career. Instead of wanting to be the best ever, a status he deemed "fickle," Bryant set out to influence people, to resonate, and to be remembered:

When asked how he felt about the prospect of taking off his jersey for the last time, Bryant told the reporter, the camera, and by extension, all Lakers fans that he is "ready to go." Judging by social media on Wednesday, the feeling is not yet mutual.

There will never be another Kobe, and he will be missed. But it makes it easier to let him go when seeing he's not raging against the dying light, and is instead at peace with his decision to walk away and find a different way to tell his stories.

You can follow this author on Twitter at @hmfaigen.

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