Kobe Bryant's 'Dear Basketball' nominated for Academy Award

Following his retirement from the NBA in 2016, Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant made clear his intentions to make “these next 20 years … better than the previous 20,” which was a tall order, considering the future Hall of Famer submitted one of the 10 greatest basketball careers in history.

So far, so good, two years into his post-hoops life.

Kobe Bryant’s “Dear Basketball, the animated short of a love poem to the game and retirement announcement he wrote for The Players’ Tribune, was nominated for an Oscar on Tuesday morning.

Bryant wrote and executive produced the animated short, which premiered on Verizon’s go90. “Dear Basketball” was directed by Glen Keane, the animator behind such Disney classics as “The Little Mermaid,” “Beauty and the Beast” and “Aladdin,” among others. The film was scored by John Williams, the five-time Oscar-winning composer of “Star Wars,” “Jaws,” “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial,” “Jurassic Park” and countless other legendary movies.

Bryant took to Twitter shortly after the announcement, calling the nomination “beyond the realm of imagination,” which, again, for someone who has reached the highest of highs, is quite a statement.

Imagine: Academy Award-winner Kobe Bryant. An Oscar sure would look nice next to his MVP trophy.

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Ben Rohrbach is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at rohrbach_ben@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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