Kobe Bryant inspired a generation of basketball players worldwide with sublime skills and an unquenchable competitive fire. He earned Los Angeles’ eternal adoration during his two decades as the fierce soul of the beloved Lakers, and he was respected by basketball fans from every place with a hoop and a dream, including his native Philadelphia and in Italy, his other childhood home.
Less than four years into his retirement, Bryant was seizing new challenges and working to inspire his daughters’ generation through sports and storytelling when his next chapter ended shockingly early. Bryant, the 18-time All-Star who won five NBA championships and became one of the greatest basketball players of his generation during a 20-year career all with the Lakers, died in a helicopter crash Sunday. He was 41. The crash occurred in the foggy hills above Calabasas, California, about 30 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles. Bryant was killed, a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press, and a different person familiar with the case confirmed Bryant's 13-year-old daughter Gianna also died.
Today on AirTalk, we reflect on Kobe Bryant’s life and legacy with owner and executive chairman of the Los Angeles Times Patrick Soon-Shiong. We want to hear from you. What Kobe moments inspired you most? How did he impact your life? Join the on-air conversation by calling 866-893-5722.
With files from the Associated Press
Patrick Soon-Shiong, owner and executive chairman of the Los Angeles Times, San Diego Union-Tribune, and other publications under the California News Group; a minority owner of the Los Angeles Lakers since 2010