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Mike Tirico Shares Incredible Story About Kobe's Final Game

Kobe Bryant in his final NBA game.

LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 13: Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers waves to the crowd as he is taken out of the game after scoring 60 points against the Utah Jazz at Staples Center on April 13, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Kobe Bryant's horrific passing has sparked an appreciation of the profound impact he had in the sports community. He was already a beloved icon, but Bryant's global reach far surpasses what many previously thought possible.

It was already well-known the Lakers legend rightfully earned the respect of all former and current NBA players. But a deeper dive into Bryant's final game of his NBA career reveals how respected and admired he truly was.

Sitting at 59 points - one point away from reaching his eventual 60th point - Bryant went to the line to attempt one final free throw.

To ensure Bryant would reach 60 points, Utah's Gordon Hayward committed an obvious free-throw lane violation. Bryant made the free-throw anyways. But Hayward's sign of respect displayed how truly loved Bryant was and is.

Mike Tirico told the incredible, inspiring story on The Ryen Russillo Podcast, courtesy of

There’s a moment from Kobe’s final game that few people saw and nobody really remembers … but @miketirico won’t ever forget it. pic.twitter.com/prJGObG58y

— The Ringer (@ringer) January 28, 2020

"> The Ringer. This is amazing.

There are so many stories coming to light following Bryant's tragic passing. But this one tells so much in just a few short minutes.

Bryant's fierce on-court play produced a legendary career. At a time like this, it's important to remember the joy he gave to fans and friends.

Bryant's legacy will be remembered as basketball players across the world model his intense passion for the game.