On Tuesday night, the LA Lakers were set to play the LA Clippers at the Staples Centre.
Instead, Los Angeles mourns the loss of one of basketball’s greatest sons.
The NBA confirmed on Monday that the game would be postponed as the Lakers organisation continue to come to terms with the tragic death of Kobe Bryant.
Police confirmed on Sunday that Bryant was one of nine people killed in a helicopter crash in California, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna also among them.
Tributes have been ongoing for the five-time NBA champion.
- Petition to make Bryant the new NBA logo goes viral
- Mourinho quoted Bryant in first Spurs press conference
- How Kobe Bryant championed the Women’s NBA
Games on Sunday were preceded by a minute’s silence and the Toronto Raptors and San Antonio Spurs both began by taking 24-second violations to honour his shirt number.
The New York Knicks turned Madison Square Garden purple and gold, while the Dallas Mavericks retied their 24 shirt, just as the Lakers had done when Bryant retired in 2016.
Meanwhile, LeBron James’ emotional Instagram post is on course to become the most ‘liked’ ever.
NBA pays tribute
In short, the world of basketball has found no shortage of ways to honour one of its greatest and the NBA have now posted their own montage of Bryant’s life on Twitter.
It’s an incredibly poignant video, one that showcases not just his talent on the court but the family man, inspirational teammate and leader he was off it.
Kobe to become a Hall-of-Famer
It has also emerged that the NBA will abandon the traditional election process that sees players inducted into its Hall of Fame and honour Bryant posthumously later in 2020.
The ceremony the will now be tinged with sadness as the whole association takes the opportunity to reflect on an incredible life and career.
Bryant was expected to attend and give a speech that sadly, we’ll now never hear.