Athletes react to Kobe Bryant’s death
The entire sporting world was left stunned by the tragic passing of basketball legend Kobe Bryant early Monday morning (Manila time).
Bryant, 41, and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna reportedly died in a helicopter crash in California, USA.
Athletes across all sports expressed their condolences to the five-time NBA champion, whose impact extends beyond the confines of the basketball court.
“We already miss you my brother RIP God Bless you and your family,” NFL superstar Tom Brady wrote on Twitter.
“I’m stunned. Words can’t even come close to describing it. Just an incredibly sad and tragic day,” former NBA superstar Scottie Pippen tweeted.
From one Lakers great to another, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar gave honor to Bryant on his social media account.
“Most people will remember Kobe as the magnificent athlete who inspired a whole generation of basketball players. But I will always remember him as a man who was much more than an athlete,” Abdul-Jabbar, the six-time champion and the NBA’s all-time leading scorer, said in a video posted on Twitter.
Bryant’s former Los Angeles Lakers teammates Shaquille O’Neal and Pau Gasol, both of whom he shared multiple championships in different years, also gave their tributes to the two-time Olympic gold medalist.
“There’s no words to express the pain Im going through with this tragedy of losing my neice Gigi & my brother @kobebryant I love u and u will be missed. My condolences goes out to the Bryant family and the families of the other passengers on board. IM SICK RIGHT NOW,” tweeted O’Neal, who teamed up with Bryant and led the Lakers to three straight titles from 2000 to 2002.
“Beyond devastated… my big brother… I can’t, I just can’t believe it,” Gasol, a vital piece of the Lakers’ back-to-back championship runs in 2009 and 2010, said.
Bryant, one of the greatest players ever, played 20 seasons in the NBA all with the Lakers.
On Sunday, Bryant was just passed by Lakers superstar LeBron James for third place on the NBA’s all-time scoring list.
“Continuing to move the game forward @KingJames. Much respect my brother,” Bryant posted Sunday which turned out to be his last tweet.