‘Not impressed’: The LA Lakers just unveiled a Kobe Bryant statue and reactions are mixed
Rock News
Rock News

‘Not impressed’: The LA Lakers just unveiled a Kobe Bryant statue and reactions are mixed

And there are still two more on the way.

Today, the late NBA legend Kobe Bryant had the first of three statues of him unveiled outside the Los Angeles Lakers' home arena. 

There is one statue of him wearing the number 8 jersey and there will be one of him wearing the number 24 jersey, and one of him with his daughter Gigi, who also tragically passed away in the same helicopter accident as Kobe.

The first of these has been shown to the public and opinion is divided on whether it's a worthy commemoration of such a legend. It shows Kobe raising his finger in the air after scoring 81 points in a game - the second most by a single player ever. 

"I’m not really impressed with the Kobe Bryant statue," wrote one person on Twitter. "I felt like they could’ve done better, but as long as Kobe family is good with it, it doesn't matter to me. Long live Mamba.”

"Are you sure that's Kobe?" said another. 

"Personally, I wanted to see the fader over the Suns," someone on Reddit added, "but this was definitely the right choice."

"It is truly fugly," a more blunt person wrote. "Do good sculptors not exist anymore or is this some modern-art type fuckery?"

"The sentimental value behind that statue is so monumental," one more said. "That’s the only game his grandma went to - the 81-point game. Iconic."

On stage at the unveiling ceremony were Kobe's wife Vanessa Bryant, his former coach Phil Jackson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, his former teammate Derek Fisher, and Lakers owner Jeanie Buss. Vanessa spoke just before the statue was revealed, and said that Kobe himself chose what moment of his was commemorated. 

“This moment isn’t just for Kobe," she said, "but it’s for all of you who have rooted for him for years.”

“For the record, Kobe picked the pose you’re about to see. So, if anyone has any issues with it, tough shit”

The team revealed the statue today's date in the US is 2/8/24 - the jersey numbers of Kobe (#8 and #24) and his daughter Gigi (#2).

He becomes the seventh Laker to be commemorated in this way, joining Elgin Baylor, Shaquille O'Neal, Abdul-Jabbar, Earvin 'Magic' Johnson, Jerry West and Chick Hearn.