'Babe, Take Care of Our Gigi': Lines From Kobe Memorial

Kobe Bryant, daughter Gigi honored at Staples Center
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 24, 2020 3:11 PM CST

(Newser) – The Staples Center, where Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant spent much of his career, on Monday hosted a huge memorial service for the fallen NBA star and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna "Gigi" Bryant. The date was chosen in honor of the father and daughter's basketball jersey numbers, 2 for Gigi and 24 for Kobe. ESPN reports that more than 20,000 people attended; in addition to friends and family, members of the public were granted tickets via a lottery for which 80,000 people applied. Proceeds will benefit the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation. Beyonce opened the ceremony (which Jay-Z's Tidal streamed for subscribers and non-subscribers alike here) by singing "XO," which she said was one of Kobe's favorites; Alicia Keys and Christina Aguilera performed later. Jimmy Kimmel served as a sort of emcee for the event, per People, which reports that he wept as he initially took the stage. Standout lines from the memorial, per CNN and People.

  • Kobe's widow, Vanessa Bryant, said of Gigi, "She was daddy's girl but I know she loved her mama." And she says her daughter, who was already fighting for equal pay for women in sports, would have done big things. "She would have made a huge difference for women's basketball. Gigi was motivated to change the way everyone viewed women in sports."

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