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Kobe Bryant Inducted into Basketball Hall of Fame with Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett

todayMay 17, 2021

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The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame held its induction ceremony for its new class of nominees, headlined by the late Kobe Bryant, whose wife Vanessa stood in on his behalf.

What We Know:

  • The ceremony, which took place Saturday night, was for the 2020 class of inductees. The ceremony had been postponed until this year due to the covid-19 pandemic. This year’s ceremony featured one of the most successful classes in the history of the NBA. LeBron James echoed these sentiments, with the Lakers forward saying, “There has not been a better Big Three to go in at the same time.”
  • The awards kicked off with Minnesota Timberwolves and Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett accepting his nomination. The 15x All-Star and 2004 NBA MVP looked back on his career, proud that he “played the game hard” and “with a passion.” Garnett continued his speech by thanking his fellow inductees Tim Duncan and Kobe Bryant for their “epic” battles against each other in the NBA’s Western Conference.
  • Later in the ceremony, legendary power forward Tim Duncan took the stage to give his remarks. Duncan spent his entire 19-year career with the San Antonio Spurs, winning 5 championships over three different decades. Nicknamed “The Big Fundamental,” the 2x NBA MVP spoke on how he originally aspired to become a professional swimmer before picking up a basketball at the age of 14. Duncan also lovingly gave praise to his coach Gregg Popovich for teaching him about basketball, but also for being an “amazing human being.”
  • However, the highlight of the proceedings came when Michael Jordan came on stage to present the hall of fame honors for 5x NBA Champion Kobe Bryant. The Chicago Bulls legend did not speak but stood by the late Bryant’s wife Vanessa as she gave her speech. In her remarks, Vanessa chose to focus on their relationship with each other and children.
  • Mrs. Bryant spoke on her husband’s fierce determination to succeed. She noted if he were there, Kobe would’ve thanked everyone who helped him reach this point, including his doubters. During his career, Kobe constantly played through numerous injuries. Vanessa spoke on how Kobe’s idol, Jordan, inspired him to do so.
  • She explained that Kobe always remembered how excited he was as a kid to get a chance to see his favorite player. “Kobe didn’t want to disappoint his fans, especially the ones in the 300 section that saved up to watch him play, the kids with the same excitement he once had,” said Vanessa. But ultimately, it was the couple’s daughters who were Bryant’s favorite fans. Vanessa thanked her husband for doing everything he could to provide them what she called “an amazing life together.”

The 2020 Naismith Hall of Fame inductees also included 2x NBA Champion coach Rudy Tomjanovich, 3x Olympic Gold Medalist Tamika Catchings, and 3x NCAA champion coach Kim Mulkey, among others.

The post Kobe Bryant Inducted into Basketball Hall of Fame with Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett appeared first on Black News Alerts.

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