The shocking death of Kobe Bryant has sent shockwaves throughout the NBA, far beyond Los Angeles, where he spent his entire 20-year career. Brooklyn Nets star Kevin Durant is among those deeply impacted by the loss.
The former Los Angeles Lakers star was killed in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, along with his 13-year old daughter Gigi and others heading to her basketball game. He was 41.
Durant, who is missing his first Nets season as he recovers from a torn achilles. Today, he met with the media for the first time since Bryant’s death on Sunday, and discussed his feelings at length.
Kevin Durant is speaking to reporters about Kobe now: “It is hard to comprehend all of this. Just having those moments with Kobe, it was always about pressing forward and at this time it is so hard to so. It is hard to keep going right now… I know we are all just mourning.”
— Malika Andrews (@malika_andrews) January 28, 2020
More from Durant, via SNY:
"It feels like nothing will ever be big enough to truly honor Kobe Bryant" pic.twitter.com/sfnHKGrC2v
— SNY (@SNYtv) January 28, 2020
Durant discussed the most appropriate ways to honor Kobe Bryant in the wake of the tragedy. The NBA postponed the upcoming Lakers-Clippers game, but other games were played Sunday, with teams finding various ways to honor the future Hall of Famer.
“Just every basketball player go out and play as hard as you can every night to honor Kobe. I think that’ll do. I tried to think about what I would say, what I would write, and nothing was big enough, you know? That’s how I feel about everything when it comes to Kobe Bryant, his mark he left on the Earth. It feels like nothing will ever be big enough to truly honor Kobe Bryant. But how we approach everyday life, me as a disciple of Kobe, study him, learn from him…I think it’s my justice to be the best that I can be every single day, not just in basketball, in everything. I feel like everyone who loved Kobe is going to take that approach in our lives.”
Kevin Durant’s star teammate Kyrie Irving was especially close with Bryant, and left Madison Square Garden before the Nets’ game at the Knicks on Sunday night, hours after the news broke.
Moments ago, Spencer Dinwiddie, a Los Angeles native who grew up admiring Bryant, decided to change his jersey from Kobe’s old No. 8 to 26.
The entire tragedy remains awful and surreal. Kobe’s death will be a cloud hanging over the rest of this season, unfortunately for those who have to go out and play the games in its wake.