A Los Angeles Lakers game is always a treat to watch and bound to attract a lot of celebrities.
But the April 13 game, when the Lakers meet the Utah Jazz at the Staples Center, will not be just any other game. Kobe Bryant, considered one of the greatest basketball players, played the final game of his 20-year career.
As much as Bryant’s last game has been extensively covered in the media, it definitely is all for good reason. People have reportedly paid up to $700 for nosebleed seats to the game; while court-side tickets shot up to as much as $27,500, as reported by ABC News.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti spoke about the famed player, referring to him as “fearlessly competitive, uncommonly loyal and globally admired.”
“For 20 years, Kobe Bryant embodied the quintessential Los Angeles sports hero: fearlessly competitive, uncommonly loyal and globally admired. His legacy as a Laker and his standing as an icon in this city are undeniable,” Garcetti said, as reported by CBS News.
“When Kobe walks into the tunnel for the final time tonight, the cheers for number 24 will be for more than his talent and his championships. They will be for the countless memories he gave an entire generation of fans — devoted and casual — who have been inspired by the tenacity he brought to every moment on the basketball court.”
Earvin “Magic” Johnson, another one of the Lakers’ greatest, wrote a letter in honor of Bryant. “For 20 years, I’ve watched you dominate the game of basketball,” the letter, which can be seen on Johnson’s website, said.
“From the Great Western Forum to the world famous Staples Center, you have dedicated your life to becoming one of the greatest players this game has ever seen. Through your commitment to success, outstanding work ethic, and winning attitude, each year you perfected your abilities beyond expectation.”
Some of the many celebrities who took to social media to honor the legend of the game include President Barack Obama, Former President Bill Clinton, Kanye West, Rafa Nadal, Tiger Woods, Bryce Harper and LeBron James. Jack Nicholson was in attendance for Bryant’s final game.