The NBA has decided to postpone Tuesday’s (Jan. 28) Lakers-Clippers game following the untimely death of Kobe Bryant.
The league said in a statement Monday (Jan. 27) that the decision was made “out of respect for the Lakers.”
Sources told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski that the Clippers did not oppose the decision to postpone the game.
Wojnarowski tweeted, “Discussions among the NBA, Lakers and Clippers played out over the past several hours --- ultimately with no objection from the Clippers to honor Lakers request of postponing Tuesday’s game in aftermath of Kobe Bryant’s passing, per sources.”
Bryant was killed Sunday (Jan. 26) in a helicopter crash. His 13-year-old daughter Gianna was also killed in that crash, along with seven others.
The Lakers learned about his death while they were flying home from a road trip game in Philadelphia. Lebron James and several other players were visibly upset by the news as they got off the plane. James was consoled by someone with a long hug as he mourned the death of his close friend.
James had just passed Bryant’s name on the all-time scoring list. He wrote “Mamba 4 Life” on his sneakers that he wore for the game where he became the league’s third-leading scorer ever.
Bryant tweeted James the night before his death congratulating him on his new record. He tweeted, “Continuing to move the game forward @KingJames. Much respect my brother #33644.” That ultimately became Bryant’s last tweet.
James spoke highly of Bryant after passing his scoring record.
He said, “...I’m happy just to be in any conversation with Kobe Bean Bryant, one of the all-time greatest basketball players to ever play, one of the all-time greatest Lakers. The man has two jerseys hanging up in Staples Center. It’s just crazy.”
According to ESPN, the Lakers organization has made grief counselors available to their employees. The organization has just released this statement. “The Los Angeles Lakers would like to thank all of you for the tremendous outpouring of support and condolences. This is a very difficult time for all of us. We continue to support the Bryant family and will share more information as it is available.”
The Lakers’ next scheduled game is at home, Friday (Jan. 31) against the Portland Trail Blazers.