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id="article-body" class="row" section="article-body"> Kobe Bryant was 41.
Christian Petersen/Getty Images Retired NBA
Bryant died Sunday morning in a helicopter crash in Southern California. Bryant's 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, was also among those killed when the helicopter burst into flames after crashing in foggy conditions.
All nine people on board the helicopter died when it hit a hillside shortly before 10 a.m. PT in the Calabasas area northwest of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department said.
Bryant, who was 41, is widely regarded as one of basketball's greatest players of all time, frequently compared with fellow NBA icon Michael Jordan. The 6-foot-6 guard spent his entire 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers, winning five NBA titles and earning All-Star honors 18 times.
He was the league's most valuable player in 2008 and won two gold medals with the USA Men's Basketball team in 2008 and 2012. Bryant was drafted out of high school at the age of 17, and when he made his professional debut in 1996, he was the youngest player to ever appear in an NBA game.
He was also the youngest player in NBA history to amass 27,000 career points. On Saturday, Bryant sent a tweet -- his last -- congratulating LeBron James for passing him for third on the NBA's all-time scoring list.
Continuing to move the game forward @KingJames. Much respect my brother 💪🏾 #33644
r>— Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) January 26, 2020 Bryant retired in 2015 and will be eligible for the NBA Hall of Fame this y
In 2016, Bryant began a new career, running a $100 million venture capital fund that primarily invests in tech, media and data companies. At the time, Bryant said he recognized venture capital is a "different ballgame" than his NBA job, but said the disciplines he learned playing pro basketball for 20 years applied to his VC jo
Bryant also picked up an Academy Award in 2018 for the animated short Dear Basketball, which is based on a letter he wrote in 2015 announcing his retirement from basketb
Basketball greats and the NBA honored the legendary player.
Jeannine & I are absolutely shocked to hear of the loss of one of my favorite people & one of the best basketball minds in the history of the game! Our hearts & prayers to Vanessa & his girls. @kobebryant you were my biggest fan, but I was yours #RIPMAMBA @NBA @espn @SLAMonline pic.twitter.com/Ll0BD6
— TheBillRussell (@RealBillRussell) January 26, 2020 We love you forever. #8 #24🙏🏾❤️
— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) January 26, 2020 Most people will remember Kobe as the magnificent athlete who inspired a whole generation of basketball players. But I will always remember him as a man who was much more than an athlete. pic.twitter.com
— Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (@kaj33) January 26, 2020 Kobe was so much more than an athlete,
he was a family man. That was what we had most in common. I would hug his children like they were my own and he would embrace my kids like they were his. His baby girl Gigi was born on the same day as my youngest daughter Me'Arah. pic.twitt
— SHAQ (@SHAQ) January 26, 2020 Statement from Michael Jordan: pic.twitter
— Estee Portnoy (@esteep) January 26, 2020 The New Orleans Pelicans and the Boston Celtics started the game by each taking 24-second shot-clock violations in honor of Kobe Bryant. pic.t
— NBA (@NBA) January 27, 2020 The New York Knicks and Madison Square Garden pay tribute to Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna. pic
— NBA (@NBA) January 27, 2020 The Hall of Fame joins the rest of the basketball world in mourning the untimely passing of Kobe Bryant, a nominee for this year's #20HoopClass and an icon of the game. We offer our sincerest condolences to the Bryant Family and those affected by this tragedy. p
— Basketball HOF (@Hoophall) January 27, 2020 Heroes come and go LEGENDS live forever‼️ #8 #2
— DWade (@DwyaneWade) January 27, 2020 Among the many remembering Bryant was singer and former L
eerleader Paula Abdul.
I am completely speechless and devastated at the unexpected passing of my dear friend, @kobebryant. Kobe had a big heart and an even bigger love for the community of Los Angeles. Through his foundation, he changed the lives of so many people and families with his wife, Vanes
— Paula Abdul (@PaulaAbdul) January 26, 2020 Countless more extended their thoughts to Bryant's family and memorialized the basketball great, including former President Barack Obama and two well-known names in tech who also own basketball teams -- Steve Ballmer, former Microsoft CEO and now owner of the LA Clippers, and Mark Cuban, longtime tech investor
and owner of the Dallas Mavericks. Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, also honored Bryant, who
ht-hearted Apple ad in 2016.
Kobe was a legend on the court and just getting started in what would have been just as meaningful a second act. To lose Gianna is even more heartbreaking to us as parents. Michelle and I send love and prayers to Vanessa and the entire
amily on an unthinkable day.
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) January 26, 2020 The Clippers mourn Kobe Bryant, an icon in this city and this sport, who inspired teammates and opponents with his drive and determination. Kobe left an indelible mark on the world. His family, friends, fans and the Laker organization
our prayers. We will miss him.
— Steve Ballmer (@Steven_Ballmer) January 26, 2020 Dallas Mavericks Owner Mark Cuban issued the following statement on the passing of Kobe and G
— Mavs PR (@MavsPR) January 27, 2020 Devastated and heartbroken by the passing of Kobe Bryant. I admired his athletic prowess from afar and his humanity close up. He was an original. Our thoughts and prayers a
his family, friends and fans. RIP.
— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) January 26, 2020 Kobe Bryant is the reason I fell in love with basketball. He was my Michael Jord
s so lucky to get to watch him play.
— Christian Rivas (@RadRivas) January 26, 2020 Thank you for everything! Your the reason why I started watching basketball. Rest high to the greatest of all
️ #ripkobe pic.twitter.com/87eXrrQwXZ
— Dylan ⚡️ (@DylanIoI) January 26, 2020 Last week was the 14th anniversa
e night Kobe hung 81 points on Jalen Rose.
ommemorated it with this funny ad.
Just watched it with my son l
t. And today Kobe is gone. So sad.
— The Hoarse Whisperer (@HoarseWisperer) January 26, 2020 Originally published Jan. 26
p.m. PT. Updated as more reactions pour in.
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