Michael Jordan took the stage at the memorial to remember his little brother, Kobe Bryant. During his hilarious and tearful tribute speech, Jordan talked about the many memories that he had with Bryant.
“I’m grateful to celebrate the gift that Kobe gave us all,” he said, speaking about Bryant’s will to be the best basketball player and father that he could be.
“Kobe left nothing in the tank, he left it all on the floor,” he shared. “Maybe it surprises people that Kobe and I were close friends but we were very close friends. Everyone wanted to always talk about the comparisons between he and I. I just wanted to talk about Kobe.”
Jordan also talked about his relationship with Bryant, saying that he would text and call him all hours of the night to talk basketball.
“At first it was an aggravation, but then it turned to a certain passion,” he said. “This kid had passion like you would never know., if you love something ... you will go to the extreme to try to understand or try to get it ... what Kobe meant to me was that someone cared about how I played the game or how he played the game. He wanted to be the best basketball player he could be, and after getting to know him I wanted to be the best big brother that I could be.”
Jordan also joked about his infamous crying meme. He says he told his wife that he wouldn’t cry because he didn’t want to the face of another crying meme for the next few years, but he couldn’t hold back the tears as he talked about Bryant.
“No one knows how much time we have, that’s why we must live in the moment,” he said. “We must enjoy the moment. ... When Kobe Bryant died, a piece of me died. ... These are the memories we have to live and learn from.”
He ended his speech with, ”Please rest in peace little brother.” Watch his full speech below.