NBA legend Kobe Bryant’s death sent shockwaves across the globe with people from all walks of life expressing their shock at the tragic news. From footballers to cricketers, and other sportspersons as well, all got together to grieve the death of one of basketball’s best ever player. Brazilian footballer Neymar also paid his tribute to Kobe Bryant, dedicating his second goal in Paris Saint-Germain’s 2-0 win at Lille to the basketball legend. The world’s most expensive player slotted home a 52nd-minute penalty and proceeded to go over to television cameras by the side of the Stade Pierre Mauroy pitch to make the number 24 with his fingers in honour of Bryant’s shirt number.
“It’s deeply saddening for the world of sport and for all of us,” said Neymar to Canal+ after the win, which put PSG 10 points clear at the top of French Ligue 1.
“Not just for basketball fans, but for everything he did for sport.”
He had already put his side ahead with a fine strike in the first half before putting the game out of reach and increasing the gap between them and second-placed Marseille.
The video of Neymar’s emotional tribute went viral on social media:
Neymar throws up the 24 for Kobepic.twitter.com/mPUveZpNA2
— NBA Central (@TheNBACentral) January 26, 2020
Kobe Bryant was one of the nine people killed in a helicopter crash in Calabasas of southern California on Sunday local time (1800 GMT).
The Los Angeles Lakers legend, five-time NBA champion and 18-time All-Star died at the age of 41.
Bryant’s daughter Gianna Bryant, 13, was also on board and died. Bryant was on his way to a travel basketball game with his daughter when the helicopter crashed.
(With Reuters inputs)