Since Kobe Bryant‘s sudden passing, it has been a tough time for many couping with the massive loss as he meant so much too so many people. It sent shockwaves in the sports world, especially the NBA, with many of his peers being stricken hard by the situation. Among those is current Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James, who finally broke his public silence by sending a touching message to his longtime colleague and close friend.
NBA community grieving over loss of Kobe Bryant
It’s hard to put into words how much he meant to the NBA as his reach and impact is so much greater than one can even imagine. Bryant helped shape the league into what it is today with his magnificent performances on the court and his mental approach to the game that many after him have tried to replicate.
There may never be another player like him, but he has influenced so many others to push harder to commitment and dedication to their craft. His performances were awe-inspiring to his peers that drove them to pick it up another notch in their own careers.
Bryant‘s impact has been quite evident with the amount of respect and tributes that have made in his honor with 24-second shot clock violations, eight-second backcourt violations, and pregame moments of silence lasting 24 seconds. There are no amount of words or gestures that can singularly encapsulate what his legacy is and how many lives he touched.
LeBron James’ heartbreaking message to Kobe Bryant
Over the years, James developed a tremendous bond with Bryant as he looked up to him as his mentor, his big brother, and aspiration to always improve his craft.
That only grew stronger with the future Hall of Famer as he went into retirement as it brought a different perspective and bond between the two all-time greats. It was a mutual respect that cemented their friendship and the connection of both playing for the Lakers only helped further that.
All of that made it extremely difficult for James to send out a personal message to Bryant, which he did on Tuesday night, pouring out his love and respect for his longtime friend. He also pledged to do all he can do to honor him on the basketball court while wearing the purple and gold.
James, like many others, cannot put into words what Bryant has meant to him and this loss has shaken him to his core. It’s a harsh reality that has settled in that he’s no longer here, but the unforgettable memories will always be.
Kobe Bryant’s legacy lives on
Only time heals everything, but this one may take away losing a legend and sports icon who was just a few years into his retirement and had so much to give ahead. That is coupled with the loss of his 13-year-old daughter Gianna, who had a promising basketball career ahead of her that could have seen stardom in WNBA one day.
There will be hard moments ahead for those significantly impacted by Bryant like James was, which will make Friday’s home game against the Portland Trail Blazers extremely tough. It will be the first time that the team will play a game since his passing.
There likely won’t be a dry eye in at Staples Center on that night, but it’s a chance to remember further what he brought to the table and all the positives that came about from his impact. It may not be something that will ever honestly be gotten over, but it’s time for his legacy to be embraced to at a level it has never been before.