Dr. Umar goes after Vanessa Bryant for not properly using Kobe’s money to help Black community

Peter Dewey
3 Min Read
Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Umar Johnson, also known as Dr. Umar, recently took a shot at Vanessa Bryant, the widow of Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant, on the “Joe Budden Podcast.”

Johnson claimed that Vanessa Bryant isn’t using the money she inherited after Kobe Bryant’s death for the Black community. While Johnson had very little factual backing of his claim, he still felt a need to take a shot at the wife of the Lakers legend.

“Vanessa inherited his wealth,” Umar said. “And guess what? Is Vanessa Bryant using any of that Black man’s money to do any good in the Black community? Absolutely f—— not.”

Johnson complained about Vanessa Bryant not using money to support historically Black colleges and universities.

It appears Johnson was referring to the Mamba and Mambacita Sports Foundation, which announced partnerships with the University of Connecticut, University of Southern California, University of Kentucky, University of Oregon, Duke University and Louisiana State University in September.

It’s quite possible that the foundation partnered with those universities since they are some of the premier schools for college basketball, and they may be able to best support the foundation’s message and growth.

Some users on social media fired back at Johnson’s comments about Vanessa Bryant. One social media user pointed out that she doesn’t owe anyone a dime except her children.

Several others came to the defense of Vanessa Bryant as well.

Vanessa Bryant and her family have been through a lot since her husband and daughter tragically passed away in a helicopter accident in January of 2020.

It seems unnecessary for Johnson to be complaining about how Vanessa Bryant is using the money from her husband’s life to honor – and further – his legacy.

During his playing career, Kobe Bryant averaged 25.0 points, 5.2 rebounds and 4.7 assists per game while shooting 44.7 percent from the field and 32.9 percent from beyond the arc. He will forever be one of the most important figures in Lakers history, as he led the team to tremendous success during his career.

A five-time NBA champion, Kobe Bryant was named to 18 All-Star teams and won two scoring titles. He was also named NBA Finals MVP two times.

Kobe Bryant and Vanessa Bryant were married for nearly two decades. It is heartbreaking that she has had to endure the loss of her husband and daughter, and it’s amazing that she’s still trying to keep the legacy of the Lakers legend alive.

Until Johnson can put himself in Vanessa Bryant’s shoes, he may want to back off on the criticism of her.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.