A Tribute to Kobe

Felix Ladaga, Staff Writer

Five time NBA champion, two time NBA finals MVP, Olympic gold medalist, Oscar winner, loving father of 4. Considered one of the greatest to play in NBA history, inspiring many generations of basketball players all around the world. Well known by many in the basketball world to have the most insane work ethic, The Black Mamba, Kobe Bryant.

Kobe Bryant has left an amazing legacy in NBA history, in the sports world and in LA, and he has sadly passed away in a helicopter accident that happened over the foggy hills of Calabasas, California involving 8 other people. He was 41 years old. The crash victims also included Bryant’s 13 year old daughter Gianna Bryant as they were headed to her basketball game where Bryant would be coaching.

Many players and fans all around the world are still mourning Bryant’s death. Former teammate of his Shaquille O’Neal, who won 3 championships with Bryant was devastated by the news and wrote in a tweet “There’s no words to express the pain I’m going through with this tragedy of losing my niece Gigi & my brother @kobebryant I love u and u will be missed.”

As O’Neal has played with Kobe in the NBA for 8 seasons together. The Bryant and O’Neal duo brought many fond memories to the LA arena and brought back “Showtime” in Los Angeles.  “I’m the first to say, hey, I got four rings and I know I couldn’t have gotten three without him… I know these things” O’Neal added on The Big Podcast with Shaq.

NBA games happening on that day also became tributes to honor the life of Kobe Bryant with a minute of silence. Most fans and NBA players also wore Bryant jerseys. Such as tennis player Nick Kyrgios who also wore a jersey right before an Australian open tennis match, and soccer player, Neymar, a well known NBA fan, also honored Bryant after a goal for Paris Saint Germain, by holding up 2 and 4 with his fingers to represent Bryant’s NBA jersey number.

The Grammys also paid homage to Kobe Bryant’s death. As many celebrities performed in tribute of him. Such as Grammy award winning singer-songwriter Lizzo, starting her performance with “Tonight is for Kobe” and performed the song “Cuz I Love You” and “Truth Hurts” which earned her a standing ovation. Rapper Lil Nas X also decided to pay tribute by having a Bryant jersey on one of the couches he was singing in the start of his performance.

Kobe Bryant has had a major impact in sports and to the culture of Los Angeles. He was a legend who left too soon. He influenced many new generations of basketball players and fans. He will be deeply remembered for his skills and talent on the basketball court, and will be remembered for impacting many people with his story of greatness.