National Basketball Association world reacts to Kobe Bryant's Academy Award

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LeBron James and Kobe Bryant's on-court rivalry, one fueled by hilarious Nike puppet commercials about Bryant's edge in championship rings, never spilled over to an NBA Finals matchup - something James is still disappointed about to this day.

Today's Oscar Awards saw a new first in its history - A sportsperson was awarded the golden statuette for the first time.

James was one of many NBA stars saluting Bryant after his "Dear Basketball" won and Oscar in the animated short category during the 90th annual Academy Awards on Sunday night.

The award was presented by the cast members from "Star Wars: The Last Jedi".

"I mean as basketball players we're really supposed to shut up and dribble but I'm glad we do a little bit more than that".

Bryant said that the inspiration to make his poem into a short animated film, came from his 11 year-old daughter, Gianna, who had told him, "Dad, you always tell us to go after our dreams, so man up". "Thank you Academy for this unbelievable honor".

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When he told people he wanted to write and tell stories after retiring from basketball, Bryant said the reaction was, "That's cute".

Bryant accepted his Oscar by making a dig at some political commentary made about Lebron James recently.

Bryant also thanked his collaborators on the project and his family. The petition was created in late January, and protests Bryant's Oscar over the accusation that he raped a nineteen-year-old girl in 2003.

"The Oscars nearly avoided nominating sexual predators for awards", the petition says."Woody Allen and James Franco didn't get anything".

In the Oscar's press room, Kobe Bryant doubled down on his comment.

While it is uncertain whether the academy will take any action if the petition reaches a very-close goal of 17,000 signatures, the rehashing of the case certainly seems to have dimmed some of Bryant's luster on the heels of becoming the first National Basketball Association player to take home an Academy Award.