A painful goodbye for two legends

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Only a select few players go out on top. John Elway, David Robinson and Derek Jeter are a few who come to mind.

Peyton Manning and Kobe Bryant are two of the greatest players to ever play in their respective sports and regardless of what you think of these two stars, watching them go out the way they are is sad.

Bryant announced Sunday that he is walking away from the game he loves at season's end and many believe the writing is on the wall for Manning, as Brock Osweiler has filled in well for the Broncos while Manning rehabs from an injury, his second in as many seasons.

I can only imagine how difficult it would be for an athlete who had been at the peak of his career only a few years ago to sit there and have to admit that his body was falling apart.

Manning threw for 4,727 yards, threw 39 touchdowns and only 15 interceptions a year ago. Through nine games this season, Manning had already thrown more interceptions (17) than last year.

Meanwhile, Bryant hasn't been healthy enough to play a full season since 2012-2013. While Jeter didn't win a World Series at the end of his final season, he did have a nice victory lap, as every MLB team honored him when the Yankees came to town. As long as Bryant stays healthy, I'm sure the same will happen for him now that he has announced he is walking away from basketball. As for Manning, some are speculating he has made his last start as a Denver Bronco. We will have to see if this is true when he comes back ready to play.

The sad truth is, neither of the players will be ending their careers the way they wanted to. For Bryant, even if he stays healthy and gets standing ovations everywhere he goes, his team is 2-14 and in last place in the Western Conference standings. If Manning comes back to start for the Broncos, there is no way he leads the team to a Super Bowl the way he has played this season. So to both players, thanks for the memories because I don't want to remember you like this.

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