As the world continues to mourn the loss of Kobe Bryant, Gianna Bryant, and the seven other passengers killed in a helicopter crash, the Los Angeles Lakers have not issued a statement yet but their players are starting to.
With the 2019-20 Lakers being the most talented team since Bryant’s, he attended two games with his second-oldest daughter, who was the reason why he started watching basketball again after he retired four years ago.
As Anthony Davis is wearing the same jersey Bryant wore for 20 seasons, he reacted to the news the day after Los Angeles returned from Philadelphia.
Although Davis and Bryant competed against each other for four seasons, it all started at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, via Instagram:
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Man this is a tough one for me! You were the first guy to put me under your wing and show me the ins and outs of the league. Had so many great convos about so many things and I will cherish those moments forever. Love you forever, Bean! #RIPKobe #RIPGiGi
A post shared by Anthony Davis (@antdavis23) on Jan 27, 2020 at 9:05am PST
After being the No. 1 pick in the 2012 NBA Draft by the New Orleans Hornets, Davis was part of Team USA. With Davis having no NBA experience, Bryant took him under his wing and the relationship continued ever since then.
While it has been difficult for players to play following the loss of their idol, a lot of them have the ‘Mamba Mentality’ and are honoring him that way.
From 24 and eight second shot clock violations to Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban stating they will never wear the No. 24 jersey again, all eyes will be on the Lakers when they take on the Los Angeles Clippers since the news.
While it is unclear what the Lakers will do to honor Bryant, the hope is Davis, LeBron James, and company win the team’s 17th championship for him.