Today marks a full year since the death of Kobe Bryant.
Kyrie Irving wanted to pay homage to his late mentor. Before Monday night’s Brooklyn Nets vs Miami Heat game, Irving was seen rocking a throwback Bryant number 8 jersey.
“You know who I was rockin’ tonight,” he said before putting up 16 points, eight rebounds, and four assists in the Nets’ 98-85 win.
When news of Bryant’s shocking death emerged last year, Irving was so emotionally distraught that he decided he couldn’t play that day.
Throughout the years Bryant and Irving became real close. In 2012, one year after he became the No. 1 overall pick in the draft, Irving famously made a video challenging Bryant to a one-on-one duel.
In December 2019, when Bryant was last seen at Barclays Center, Irving arranged for the players from his alma mater, The Patrick School, to meet with Kobe during a Nets-Hawks game.
When on the court, Irving’s play is reminiscing of Bryant’s mamba mentality.