The Los Angeles Lakers have been blessed to see some of the game’s greatest players don the purple and gold throughout the years.
From Jerry West and Wilt Chamberlain, to Magic Johnson, Kareem Adbul-Jabbar, and Shaquille O’Neal, Lakers fans have been spoiled and fortunate to watch numerous Hall of Famers help being championships to Los Angeles.
However, arguably the most popular and beloved Laker is the late Kobe Bryant. Despite being originally drafted by the Charlotte Hornets, an immediate trade amounted to Bryant spending his entire 20-year career with the Lakers, complete with five championships.
His influence and contributions to the game of basketball can not be understated, so when he tragically died in a helicopter accident back in January, it shook the basketball world to its core. For months, people across the world paid their respects and condolences to the Bryant family while also creating countless tributes to the Lakers icon.
In a surprise Netflix special, Dave Chapelle discussed his feelings toward Bryant and shared why he did not attend the Grammys at Staples Center:
“I loved Kobe Bryant. He died the day I won a Grammy. That’s why I didn’t show up at the Grammys, because Kobe died. They had both of his [expletive] jersey numbers hanging up: 8 and 24. Well, that’s my birthday. I cried like a baby.”
Chapelle is just one of many celebrities who were affected by Bryant’s sudden death and was distraught enough to miss the Grammys where he would end up winning for Best Comedy Album. Bryant’s unrelenting pursuit of perfection and willingness to work as hard as necessary to achieve his goals is something that resonates with everyone and it is not surprising to see someone as successful as Chapelle admit how much the future Hall of Famer meant to him.
It is hard to believe that is has already been five months since Bryant, along with his daughter Gianna and seven others, lost their lives, but they are certainly not forgotten. Unfortunately for Bryant’s wife, Vanessa, she is currently embroiled in a lawsuit with the company that owned and operated the helicopter that crashed back in January.
Not only that, but Vanessa also filed a claim against the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department after it was discovered that several individuals shared illicit photos of the crash site. Hopefully both these issues come to a conclusion sooner rather than later and the Bryant family can finally begin to truly recover from such a devastating event.