LeBron James posts tribute to Kobe Bryant: 'I promise you I'll continue your legacy'

LeBron James and Kobe Bryant.
(Image credit: Jason Miller/Getty Images)

In a note he posted to Instagram Monday night, NBA star LeBron James shared that he kept attempting to write something about Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant, but "every time I try I begin crying again just thinking about you, niece Gigi, and the friendship/bond/brotherhood we had."

Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others were killed on Sunday morning when their helicopter crashed in Calabasas, California. On Saturday night, the Lakers played the Philadelphia 76ers, and James passed Bryant on the NBA's all-time scoring list, becoming third with 33,655 points and moving Bryant down to fourth place, with 33,643 points. Bryant tweeted his congratulations, and later called James.

"Didn't think for one bit in a million years that would be the last conversation we'd have," James wrote. He offered his condolences to Bryant's wife, Vanessa, and their three surviving children, and made a vow. "I promise you I'll continue your legacy man!" he wrote. "You mean so much to us all here, especially at #LakerNation, and it's my responsibility to put this s--t on my back and keep it going! Please give me the strength from the heavens above and watch over me! ... There's so much more I want to say but just can't right now because I can't get through it! Until we meet again my brother!"

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.


Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up

Continue reading for free

We hope you're enjoying The Week's refreshingly open-minded journalism.

Subscribed to The Week? Register your account with the same email as your subscription.

Catherine Garcia

Catherine Garcia is night editor for TheWeek.com. Her writing and reporting has appeared in Entertainment Weekly and EW.com, The New York Times, The Book of Jezebel, and other publications. A Southern California native, Catherine is a graduate of the University of Redlands and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.