Kobe Bryant memorial: What to know as the NBA world honors a legend


A memorial service celebrating the lives of Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna will be held Monday at Staples Center in downtown L.A. The date — Feb. 24 — reflects the basketball jersey numbers worn by Kobe (No. 24) and Gianna (No. 2).

The service will be held just less than a month after Bryant, 13-year-old Gianna and seven others died in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California, on Jan. 26.

More than 20,000 people — friends, family and those who acquired tickets through a lottery (80,000 applied) — are expected to crowd into the arena, with proceeds benefiting the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation.

Included will be the Houston RocketsJames Harden and Russell Westbrook and Oregon‘s Sabrina Ionescu, who is scheduled to address the crowd and then fly to her game that evening at Stanford. Kobe and Gigi had traveled to Oregon to see Ionescu play, and they had become close.

It isn’t known whether Kobe’s wife, Vanessa, and their three surviving daughters, Natalia, Bianca and Capri — or his parents, Joe and Pam — will attend.

The Lakers are expected to arrive in a large group, including management, coaches and players, as are members of the LA Clippers and Memphis Grizzlies, who play at Staples on Monday night.

A Celebration of Life for Kobe and Gianna Bryant will air live on ESPN, the ESPN App and ESPN Radio at 1 p.m. ET.

— Shelley Smith

People closest to Kobe Bryant share the stories they’re looking back on ahead of Monday’s memorial. — Ramona Shelburne

The Lakers’ first game after Kobe Bryant’s death was full of consoling and catharsis. — Baxter Holmes

Kobe had the skill and knowledge to be any kind of player he wanted to be. — Zach Lowe

From his first NBA media day to his phenomenal final game, we reveal the untold stories behind the most legendary images of the Black Mamba.

Latest news and reaction

Remembering Kobe



Elle Duncan tells the story of when she met Kobe Bryant and how he told her he loved being the father of daughters.



An emotional Tracy McGrady details how important Kobe Bryant was to the beginning of his career and shares how special Kobe’s daughter Gianna was.

From the archive: ESPN writers on Kobe

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