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April 4, 2020

The late Kobe Bryant is officially on his way to Springfield.

Bryant, the former Los Angeles Laker who was killed along with his daughter Gianna and seven others in a helicopter crash in California in January, was selected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame on Saturday. He'll be inducted on Aug. 29 in a ceremony that will also be headlined by Bryant's contemporaries and fellow NBA legends, Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett.

Bryant's wife, Vanessa, and oldest daughter, Natalia, appeared on ESPN on Saturday to talk about the significance of the achievement. Vanessa Bryant said she wished her husband was there to experience the moment, but it was nevertheless an "incredible accomplishment and honor" and the "peak" of his NBA career. "Every accomplishment that he had as an athlete was a stepping stone to be here," she said.

In addition to the three NBA superstars, all-time WNBA great Tamika Catchings will also be enshrined, as will Baylor University women's basketball head coach Kim Mulkey, Bentley University women's basketball head coach Barbara Stevens, four-time NCAA men's basketball coach of the year Eddie Sutton, and former Houston Rockets head coach Rudy Tomjanovich. Tim O'Donnell

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