Kobe Bryant Given Star-Studded Send Off at Final Game
Stars including Lamar Odom and Jack Nicholson featured in a tribute video for Kobe Bryant ahead of the sportsman’s final game on Wednesday night before retiring from professional basketball. The American sporting legend played his final game for the Los Angeles Lakers at the city’s Staples Center.
Hundreds of avid fans of the 37-year-old player flooded into the venue to support him as he wore his Lakers vest for the final time, including celebrities such as Nicholson, Jay Z, Kanye West, David Beckham, Kendrick Lamar, Snoop Dogg, Adam Levine and wife Behati Prinsloo and The Weeknd. Prior to the game, a tribute video was played which featured many of Kobe’s teammates old and new, including Odom. The footage marked the first time Odom has been seen speaking publicly since his health battle last year after being found unconscious in a Las Vegas brothel. Using his former teammate’s middle name, Odom said in the video: “Bean what’s up, it’s your little brother L.O. Just want to tell you I love you. You got a great career. I’m proud to say that I was right there with you, Kobe Bean.”
Those who couldn’t attend the game but voiced their support for Bryant in his final game included U.S. President Barack Obama, who wrote on Twitter: “Big night of basketball – @Warriors chasing 73 and a farewell for an all-timer, @KobeBryant.” Reese Witherspoon referenced Bryant’s nickname “Black Mamba” by writing, “Who’s gonna be watching @kobebryant tonight? #Icon #MambaDay #WeWillMissYou.” David Beckham was present to watch the game, but also wrote some touching words on Instagram about Bryant alongside a snap of the pair together. He wrote, “Tonight will be full of emotions , happy ones & and sad ones but we celebrate the career of one the games greatest players and a true LAKER … It’s been an honor watching this man win championships and to have done it in style just the way this city expects… Easier said than done… Congrats my friend on a career that many people dream of…. @lakers @kobebryant @lagalaxy.”
What do Jack Nicholson, Taylor Swift and Lamar Odom all have in common?Each paid tribute to Kobe on Wednesday: https://t.co/kz9cSerpao— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) April 14, 2016