Kobe Bryant will be posthumously inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
The five-time NBA champion died, aged 41, in a helicopter crash in January alongside his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others.
Los Angeles Lakers’ great Bryant retired in 2016; he was the NBA’s Most Valuable Player in 2008, was Finals MVP twice and earned 18 All-Star selections.
He was in the United States team that won Olympic gold in 2008 and 2012.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver said Bryant’s death was “unspeakable” and the league was keen to “honour” him.
“Kobe Bryant is synonymous with NBA All-Star and embodies the spirit of this global celebration of our game,” Silver said.
“He always relished the opportunity to compete with the best of the best and perform at the highest level for millions of fans around the world.”
Tim Duncan, a five-time NBA champion with the San Antonio Spurs, and Kevin Garnett, who helped the Boston Celtics win the championship in 2008, were also inducted into the Hall of Fame.
The Hall of Fame is named after Dr James Naismith, the Canadian physician who invented basketball.
Who else makes the Hall of Fame?
- San Antonio Spurs stalwart Duncan, 43, was a 15-time All-Star, five-time NBA champion and the MVP in 2001-02 and 2002-03.
- Former Minnesota Timberwolves Garnett, 43, was a 15-time All-Star, an NBA champion with the Boston Celtics in 2007-08 and the league MVP in 2003-04.
- Sutton, 84, coached Creighton, Arkansas, Kentucky and Oklahoma State to the NCAA Tournament, reaching the Final Four three times.
- Tomjanovich, 71, coached the Houston Rockets to NBA championship in 1993-94 and 1994-95. He also averaged 17.4 points and 8.1 rebounds in 11 seasons as a player with the Rockets.
- Catchings, 40, was a 10-time All-Star in 15 years with the WNBA’s Indiana Fever. She was the MVP of the WNBA Finals as the Fever won the league title in 2012, a year after she was the regular-season MVP.
- Mulkey, 57, was inducted into the Hall of Fame as a player in 2000, and now she is entering as a coach. She led Baylor to NCAA titles in 2004, 2012 and 2019, and she was selected the USBWA National Coach of the Year in 2011, 2012 and 2019
- Stevens, 65, has amassed a total of 1,039 coaching wins for three Massachusetts programs: Clark, UMass and Bentley.
Click on the comment box below and leave us your thoughts. Thank you