August 23 is the birthday of the late Kobe Bryant. The former Lakers star tragically died in a helicopter accident in January and while time presses on, much of the basketball world is still attempting to come to terms with Bryant’s death. An icon of the sport and an inspiration for many, Bryant was seen as a hero around the basketball world.
Many of those same athletes and organizations that revered Bryant took to Twitter to show their love for the player they loved. Across all of them, it was the same message. He was an inspiration to them and someone they wish they could get the chance to speak to once again.
We miss you every day, Kobe. Happy birthday from your Lakers family. pic.twitter.com/6hzwFXgkwh
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) August 23, 2020
Pau Gasol also offered a remembrance of his longtime friend and teammate, who he won two titles with in L.A.
With tears in my eyes today… I just wish so badly that you were here celebrating your bday with your girls and family. I miss you and Gigi so much brother. I will always be thankful for how much you have impacted my life in so many different ways. #Hermano #Familia #42 🎂 pic.twitter.com/hHYYfUwmcj
— Pau Gasol (@paugasol) August 23, 2020
Bryant was not just an inspiration to a legion of NBA stars, but he was among the most prominent and vocal supporters of the women’s game and the WNBA. On Sunday, many WNBA players were seen getting off their bus before their games in the WNBA Bubble at IMG Academy wearing Bryant’s jersey in tribute.
— WNBA (@WNBA) August 23, 2020
Jewell Lloyd, long a fan of Bryant, was also very close to him and saw him as a mentor. She tweeted a video showing her adoration for Bryant on Twitter.
— Jewell B Loyd (@jewellloyd) August 23, 2020
This followed up a story done by The Undefeated that Lloyd also retweeted two days before where she spoke about the messages Bryant instilled in her.
There were of course many NBA players showing their adoration of Bryant through Twitter as well. You were able to see how far across the world Bryant touched from Nicolas Batum in France to Zach Lavine in Washington, and so many points in between.
— Zach LaVine (@ZachLaVine) August 23, 2020
Mamba Day 🐍🖤🙌🏽
— Ja Morant (@JaMorant) August 23, 2020
— Tristan Thompson (@RealTristan13) August 23, 2020
Bryant was obviously respected by his peers throughout his playing days. One of his Western Conference adversaries, Dirk Nowitzki, showed his respect through a tweet of his own.
— Dirk Nowitzki (@swish41) August 23, 2020
It’s clear that Bryant’s impact is still being felt across the NBA. His ability as not only a basketball player but as a person left an impact on many. An impact that is not going to fade anytime soon.