Being the daughter of Kobe Bryant Natalia has a competitive nature inherited. So 19-year-old once selected a sport of her liking and excelled well at a given age. The young star once accepted that her interest is in volleyball. She chose volleyball over basketball because she hates running.
Young stars thrived in the sport as one would expect. Natalia is 5’9 tall and fits every requirement of the game. She did play near the net as a blocker, and even as an exceptional middle blocker covering the right and left side of the floor. Natalia was helpful in both defense and attacks. She stands out as the tallest player on the team and hence the key player.
On playing front, she has the power, athleticism, and determination to win it all. Her smash was a useful arsenal for her team and a point-scoring one. Born in California, she attended Sage High School. And she even captained the varsity volleyball team.
Why did Natalia Bryant stop playing volleyball?
Vanessa and Natalia share a very close bond. Her mother brought her into the game as both of them attended many Volleyball tournaments together. Vanessa took her to watch beach volleyball player Misty May-Treanor; who was competing at the 2012 London Olympics. The pro beach Volleyball player won the gold medal that year along with teammate Kerri Walsh Jennings.
The 18-year-old Natalia Bryant is near six feet tall and moves with the certainty of a born and bred California girl who came this close to pursuing college volleyball. She’s used to sunny days and sand between her toes. pic.twitter.com/1jY8puTSUL
— Wanderer65 (@asanjanarahi) October 27, 2021
Natalia was 9 years old by then and was very impressed by the player and sport. Natalia said, “I was watching and [my mom] was like, ‘Nani, you’re going to love this sport. You’re going to love volleyball. I’m calling it right now.’ I think [my mom] knew I wasn’t confident in my height. She’s like, ‘You’re going to play volleyball. You’re going to get confident because of this. There are all these other tall girls too, so you’re not the only one.'”
In a Teen Vogue cover story, Bryant reveals that she prefers volleyball to basketball. She had an early inclination toward her dad’s game, but the Olympic game changed her mind. Finally, she took up club volleyball, with the end goal being that she would end up becoming a Division 1 athlete when she attended college.
But the passion soon died as she was shaken by the saddening news of the helicopter crash. On January 26, 2020, Gianna Bryant and LA Lakers star Kobe lost their lives. It is after this crash that she is reported as having quit volleyball.
She reflected, “I love the sport. I quit volleyball after the accident because I was so…a lot was going on at that time. I knew I didn’t…love volleyball as much as they love basketball. I’m okay with that.”
Natalia is now a freshman at USC, where she plans to study film. She also recently signed a contract with IMG Models and enjoys spending time with her mom and little sisters Bianka and Capri.