A memorial service celebrating the lives of Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna will be held Monday, Feb. 24, at Staples Center in downtown L.A. The date reflects the basketball jersey numbers worn by Kobe (No. 24) and Gianna (No. 2).
The service will be held just under 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 friends, family and those who acquired tickets through a lottery — 80,000 applied — are expected to crowd into the arena, with proceeds benefitting the Mamba and Mambacita Sports Foundation.
Included will be NBA luminaries such as the Houston Rockets’ James Harden and Russell Westbrook, fresh off a game Saturday night, and Oregon’s Sabrina Ionescu, who is scheduled to address the crowd and then fly to her game at Stanford. Kobe and Gigi had flown to Oregon to see Ionescu play, and they had become close.
It isn’t known whether Kobe’s wife, Vanessa, and their three 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, and so 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
What was said after Kobe’s death
People closest to Kobe Bryant share the stories they’re looking back on ahead of Monday’s memorial.
The quiet moments from an emotional night for the Lakers
The Lakers’ first game after Kobe Bryant’s death was full of consoling and catharsis. — Baxter Holmes
Kobe Bryant’s greatness was both beautiful and maddening
Kobe had the skill and knowledge to be any kind of player he wanted to be. — Zach Lowe
Tales of the greatest Kobe pics from the man behind the camera
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
Vanessa Bryant expresses grief, anger in Instagram post
NBA auctioning off All-Star jerseys to honor Kobe, Gianna
Dwyane Wade echoes Kobe in Heat jersey retirement
Pilot in Kobe crash violated visibility rules in 2015
How the Lakers have grieved and remembered Kobe Bryant
MacMullan: Kobe was relentless, curious, infinitely complicated
Tributes from: Shaquille O’Neal | Jeanie Buss | Rob Pelinka | LeBron James
From the archive: ESPN writers on Kobe
Mamba out: Kobe Bryant was just getting started
The story of Kobe’s greatest game
The unlikely people who led Kobe to embrace his obsession
How Kobe’s legacy forced the Lakers to retire two numbers
The decade-old Kobe sneaker today’s NBA players can’t stop wearing
Source: Read Full Article