PBA mourns death of ‘dear friend’ Kobe Bryant
MANILA, Philippines — The PBA expressed its condolences to basketball great Kobe Bryant, who was killed in a helicopter crash in California on Sunday.
In a statement, the league mourned the passing of Bryant, who was a frequent visitor in the country throughout his storied career.
“The PBA has lost a dear friend in Kobe Bryant who leaves behind fond memories of seven unforgettable visits to our country. Kobe was an exceptional basketball player but beyond his athletic skills, he was known for his caring heart and love of family,” the PBA said.
“His life was an inspiration and a lesson to everyone that with hard work, dedication and self-sacrifice, nothing is impossible. At 41, Kobe is gone too soon but his legacy will last forever. The PBA mourns the passage of a man who has touched the lives of millions. Rest in peace, Kobe.”
Bryant, a five-time NBA champion with the Los Angeles Lakers and a two-time Olympic gold medalist, was also with his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others when his private chopper went down and left no survivors.
Bryant made his first Manila visit in 1998 and had his last in June 2016 just two months after scoring 60 points in his final NBA game.
He played 20 seasons in the NBA all with the Lakers.