ESPN is planning to celebrate the life and career of Kobe Bryant through a special magazine issue release.
According to Sports Business Journal, the 96-page issue will feature a variety of things, including photographs of Bryant’s career and writings from various ESPN personalities who covered Bryant during his career, like Stephen A. Smith.
The issue will be titled Kobe Bryant: An Extraordinary Life and will not feature the ESPN magazine branding. ESPN stopped publishing last year, but ESPN execs said the company would continue to print a few memorial issues each year.
“We specifically limited this to be a test case to do the work, see how the process goes and see if this makes sense,” Alison Overholt, ESPN’s vice president of storytelling and special projects, told Sports Business Journal. “We’ll evaluate when and how often it makes sense to do something like this.”
Bryant was tragically killed in a helicopter crash alongside his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others. They were traveling to a basketball game at Bryant’s Mamba Sports Academy facility.
Since the tragic incident, Bryant has been honored during multiple events.
The Los Angeles Lakers, the team Bryant spent 20 years with during his NBA career, held a special tribute during their first home game since the crash. Usher sang “Amazing Grace” and LeBron James gave a heartwarming speech. Every fan that attended the game received a No. 8 or No. 24 shirt, which were the numbers Bryant wore as a Laker.
Bryant will be honored at the 2020 All-Star game in Chicago, Illinois. Team Giannis will wear No. 24 on their jerseys while Team LeBron will wear the No. 2 jerseys to pay homage to Gianna.
Bryant will also be honored at the upcoming Oscars.
“We can confirm that Kobe Bryant will be acknowledged in the telecast,” the Academy said in a statement on January 28.
ESPN’s Bryant issue will be released Friday, February 7.