Late Kobe Bryant to Be Inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame

Kobe Bryant, one of the NBA's greatest of all time, will soon be posthumously inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame along with 20 other athletes.

The ceremony will take place this Saturday, May 15, in Springfield, Massachusetts, after being postponed last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

With the help of Kobe's wife, Vanessa Bryant, the Hall of Fame has created a very special exhibit that will honor the late player, who perished in a helicopter crash on January 26, 2020.

Late Kobe Bryant during the second quarter against the Utah Jazz in Game Two of the 2009 Western Conference Quarterfinals in Los Angeles, California | Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Late Kobe Bryant during the second quarter against the Utah Jazz in Game Two of the 2009 Western Conference Quarterfinals in Los Angeles, California | Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

HONORED WITH AN EXHIBIT

Ahead of the ceremony, on Friday, Vanessa and daughter Natalia stepped on stage and accepted Kobe's Hall of Fame blazer on his behalf at the Hall of Fame awards.

Kobe, who was 41 years old at the time of his death, will be inducted alongside names such as Kevin Garnett, Rudy Tomjanovich, Tim Duncan, and Tamika Catchings.

The exhibit, according to President and CEO John Doleva, is expected to be the "most talked about" in the Hall. He added:

"It almost feels to me like it is the what's next, what could have been next, for Kobe. So it looks backward, looks at the present and has a hint of the future, which I think is fantastic."

Doleva explained that the exhibit would focus on Kobe's accomplishments, not only on the court but also after he left the Los Angeles Lakers and retired from basketball.

His 13-year-old old daughter, Gianna, was also one of the fatal victims of the crash.

Vanessa, who shared some sneak peeks of the exhibit with her fans on Instagram, said in a statement that she is looking forward to celebrating Kobe's legacy and offering her "remarks at the enshrinement ceremony."

Not only that, but she also took the opportunity to thank, on behalf of the Bryant family, fans around the world for the love and support that they continue to show every day.

TRAGIC LOSSES

As aforementioned, Kobe lost his life after the helicopter he was in crashed into a Calabasas hillside while en route to a basketball tournament in Thousand Oaks.

His 13-year-old old daughter, Gianna, was also one of the fatal victims of the crash, along with Sarah Chester, Payton Chester, Alyssa Altobelli, Keri Altobelli, Joh Altobelli, Christina Mauser, and Ara Zobayan.

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