Legendary NBA superstar Kobe Bryant shared his intentions to retire after the current season online, sharing the news through Facebook and Twitter.
The posts linked to a poem regarding Bryant’s career that was hosted on The Players’ Tribune, and suffice to say, the website was not prepared for all the attention that Bryant’s announcement received.
The website crashed due to the massive number of visits to Bryant’s retirement poem, with TechCrunch discovering by speaking with The Players’ Tribune that the original post received around 1 million clicks over the first two hours of being posted. The figure does not include the failed attempt to access the website while it was crashing on and off over the first hour.
Bryant’s poem, entitled Dear Basketball, is the post on the website that has received the most traffic to date, with hundreds of websites linking to the page.
“A love so deep I gave you my all – From my mind body, To my spirit soul,” Bryant wrote in the poem.
“This season is all I have left to give. My heart can take the pounding, My mind can handle the grind But my body knows it’s time to say goodbye,” Bryant also said, announcing his retirement after 20 seasons in the NBA, all with the Los Angeles Lakers.
The retirement announcement by Bryant is not an entirely surprising one, as the shooting guard has previously signaled that this could be his last season in the NBA. Bryant has amassed two Olympic gold medals, five NBA championships and 17 All-Star selections over his illustrious career.
“I join Kobe’s millions of fans around the world in congratulating him on an outstanding NBA career and thank him for so many thrilling memories,” said NBA commissioner Adam Silver.
The Players’ Tribune is a venture by retired MLB legend Derek Jeter that has been receiving almost 2 million unique views per month, with the website looking to better connect athletes with their fans. With a post on the website receiving half of that monthly load in just two hours, the crashes were understandable.