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Kobe Bryant Fans Believe Staples Center Is Too Small for Public Memorial

Busayo Ogunjimi
Feb 08, 2020
10:30 P.M.

Following the revelation of the date, time and venue set aside for the memorial of the late basketball legend, Kobe Bryant, fans have turned up in protest, noting that the venue is "way too small."

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After much speculation and debate, Los Angeles county finally fixed the date and venue for the public memorial in honor of the late basketball icon, Kobe Bryant.

Two weeks after the NBA champion and his 13-year-old daughter, Giana, died alongside seven others in a Calabasas helicopter crash, a memorial service in his honor has been slated to hold at the Staples Center, on February 24.

Kobe Bryant poses with his family after both his #8 and #24 Los Angeles Lakers jerseys are retired at Staples Center on Dec. 18, 2017 in California | Photo: Getty Images

Kobe Bryant poses with his family after both his #8 and #24 Los Angeles Lakers jerseys are retired at Staples Center on Dec. 18, 2017 in California | Photo: Getty Images

While the date, 2/24, is significant to the jersey numbers of the 18-time winning Lakers star, and his daughter, the venue represents a huge part of the late icons two decades basketball career.

Since the unveiling of the funeral arrangements, fans have staged an online protest against the 20,000 capacity venue. Many claim that the designated arena was not big enough to hold everyone who would like to pay their respects. Via Twitter, a fan voiced out:

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"Are the Lakers really having the Kobe Memorial at Staples Center??? Too small!!!"

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Most fans opined that the memorial would have been better suited for the 80,000 capacity Colosseum, which was one of the venue options earlier speculated.

A fan expressed his reservations, recalling that the arena had been way too small for the rapper, Nipsey's memorial last year. One fan agreed that though small, the Staples Center was fitting, as it was "the house that Kobe built."

Another objected pointing out the limited space at the venue would lead to some form of segregation whereby "the elite will gain access, and the fans will be shutout."

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The arena, which boasts of a maximum capacity of 20,000 which may vary according to the event at hand, was almost at its capacity on Friday when the Lakers played against the Portland Trail Blazers.

The game between the two teams marked the first return of the late basketball icon's team to the court after his demise.

The staples center made the most sense as it was such a big part of Kobe's life.

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Addressing the choices made by the City of Los Angeles, which has since sparked debates online, a source explained:

"There were conversations about possibly having the ceremony at the LA Coliseum to fit more people, but ultimately the staples center made the most sense as it was such a big part of Kobe's life."

This announcement comes days after Los Angeles residents held a makeshift memorial outside the Staples Center to honor the late star.

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Fans turned up for the memorial, bearing tribute items, including basketballs, candles, banners, shoes, flags, written notes, and jerseys. Workers at the arena have worked tirelessly to clear out the tributes, sorting them into stacks of boxes.

According to Lee Zeidman, President of the Staples Center, Vanessa Bryant, the deceased's widow requested for all the items to be gathered and sent to her family, to keep Kobe's legacy alive.

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