While the world was shocked and grieving the death of Kobe Bryant, the Los Angeles Lakers players, coach, and Dwight Howard did not know the news. The Lakers were flying home from Philadelphia, when the news trickled onto their plane. Head coach Frank Vogel confirmed the news to the team.
What We Know:
- The NBA postponed the Lakers’ game against the LA Clippers on Tuesday at the Staples Center.
- The discussions between the NBA, the Lakers and the Clippers took place over several hours before the NBA’s decision, with the Clippers honoring the Lakers’ request to postpone the game, sources told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
“The decision was made out of respect for the Lakers organization, which is deeply grieving the tragic loss of Lakers legend Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna and seven other people in a helicopter crash on Sunday,” the NBA said in a statement.
- The Lakers canceled practice Monday, as the entire organization was dealt with grief.
- The night prior to Bryant’s passing, LeBron James passed Bryant on the league’s all-time scoring list during the Lakers-76ers game. The day of the accident, James was recorded departing the plane from the 76ers game and was clearly distraught and heartbroken due to the news.
- Sunday night, the same day as Bryant’s death, NBA games continued. Many players were on-court and the sidelines being recorded while they were visibly distraught. Fans called the continuance of the games outrageous and disrespectful to the current players and their mental health.
- Bryant played 20 seasons with the Lakers and had formed relationships with everyone apart of the organization, in or around. This includes Jeanie Buss who is the controlling owner and president and Rob Pelinka who was his longtime agent and now vice president of basketball operations/GM of the Lakers.
There is currently no news on when the Lakers-Clippers game is expected to be rescheduled. Our hearts go out to all nine individuals who passed in Sunday’s crash and their families.