The stats, the championships, the money, none of it stacks up to the love that Kobe Bryant has for the game of basketball and now that love will no longer be as a professional when this NBA season comes to a end.

In a letter posted on the Players Tribune website, Kobe announced that he would retire from basketball at the end of this season.

One of the games best players and truly one of the games best competitors, Bryant has seen better days on the court and the Lakers are a absolute mess.

Injuries have cost him time on the court the last couple of years and admiringly in his letter, the body is what is a main factor in this decision.

When Kobe does finally hang up the sneakers at the end of the season, regardless of his current form as a NBA star, Kobe Bryant's absence will leave a big void in the game of basketball.