The NBA and the entire world is in utter shock at the death of Kobe Bryant at age 41 in a helicopter crash. The news broke barely 90 minutes before the Sunday afternoon slate of games began, and the Houston Rockets and Denver Nuggets were one of the first teams to tip off after it happened.
The Rockets and Nuggets were playing at the Pepsi Center in Denver, and they held a moment of silence before the game began.
A moment of silence for Kobe in Denver.— Ƒunhouse (@BackAftaThis) January 26, 2020
[NBA TV] pic.twitter.com/ycMRDzJW0d
The Toronto Raptors and San Antonio Spurs tipped off at the same time as the Rockets and Nuggets, and while there was a pregame moment of silence at AT&T Center in San Antonio, the players on the court found their own way to pay tribute to one of the NBA’s all-time greatest, via an extremely symbolic 24-second clock violation. After the tip, the winning team let the shot clock run out for the best player to ever wear 24:
Remarkable moment to start the Raptors-Spurs game. pic.twitter.com/thmt9ZU1Ra— Timothy Burke (@bubbaprog) January 26, 2020
The rest of the league did the same in subsequent games.
Boston Celtics vs. New Orleans Pelicans:
Phoenix Suns vs. Memphis Grizzlies:
Los Angeles Clippers vs. Orlando Magic:
Brooklyn Nets vs. New York Knicks:
Washington Wizards vs. Atlanta Hawks:
Indiana Pacers vs. Portland Trail Blazers
Bryant’s death is deeply affecting the NBA community, and players like Tyson Chandler were unable to hide their grief during the game.
Trae Young of the Hawks tearfully embraced his mother after warmups, prior to the Hawks taking on the Wizards.
The National Basketball Players Association released a statement about the tragic death of one of their own.
NBPA Statement on the passing of Kobe Bryant pic.twitter.com/iWDBcV7c2N— NBPA (@TheNBPA) January 26, 2020
NBA commissioner Adam Silver also released a statement.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver issued the following statement today regarding the passing of Kobe Bryant pic.twitter.com/P88GwIwmYV— NBA (@NBA) January 26, 2020
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