Reporters Lament on The Passing of NBA Superstar

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REMEMBERING KOBE 

In some of the most shocking news in sports history, 41-year-old Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna were among nine passengers killed in a helicopter accident on Sunday morning. The helicopter was headed to a youth basketball game.

Bryant was born Aug. 23,1978 in Philadelphia. He played high school basketball at Lower Marion, and was drafted straight after his senior ended by the Charlotte Hornets before being traded to the Lakers. In 20 seasons in the NBA, Bryant won 5 championships and had 18 all-star appearances. He is considered a legend in the sports world, often being compared to Michael Jordan. He is being mourned by millions of fans across the globe.

NBA players, coaches and executives league-wide have honored Kobe in a number of ways. Multiple players changed their number to No. 8. Dozens of players wore Bryant’s signature shoe. Every team in the league intentionally took 8 and 24 second violations, honoring his two jersey numbers. Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban announced Bryant’s jersey will never be worn again.

Jan. 26 is a day basketball fans will never forget. It will be in history as one of the most emotional days the NBA has ever seen. Basketball just lost one of its greatest ever, and tears are dropping worldwide.

Words can’t describe the way I feel right now. Like many others, Kobe was my idol. I have loved Kobe since I was a kid. I even wrote a biography of his life in 4th grade I remember studying his moves on Youtube and watching him score 60 points in his final game. I am still in shock of what happened, and it will take me awhile to get over. When I first found out the news, I was numb to it. I wanted to believe it was a false report, not thinking Kobe dying was possible.

I think what hurts the most is how his daughter Gianna passed. She had so many years of life left, and had a legitimate chance to make the WNBA.

REMEMBERING GIANNA

Gianna Bryant was more than Kobe Bryant’s daughter. She was a girl planning to follow her famous father’s footsteps in the world of basketball, hoping to one day play for Geno Auriemma at UConn and the WNBA. 

I always thought that Kobe’s kids would be as good as him, because I figured that he would train his kids  to be better than him or to be as good as he was. When I first heard about Gianna Bryant, I was like, ‘she’s gonna be a good player like her dad, maybe better.’  Today when I watch videos of Gianna, I kind of tear up because I know of what she could have become.

Over the last couple months, I’ve watched videos of her growing from a baby in her father’s arms, to a small child trying to hold his Finals MVP trophy to his companion at WNBA, college and NBA games around the country, listening to her father break down play and watching every detail on the court, just as he always did.The film study was working. So, too, was the five- or six- or seven-times-a-week workouts that Bryant would host for Gigi and her teammates on the team he coached. They ran the triangle offense, the one where Bryant had so much success with during his career. Grown men, professionals, the best players in the world, struggled with the triangle. Bryant had pre-teen girls figuring it out.

On Jan. 26, 2020 that all changed.