Feb 1, 2020 - Sports

In photos: Lakers play first game after loss of Kobe

In this image, LeBron James hugs a teammate on the court
LeBron James and Anthony Davis embrace before playing the Portland Trail Blazers on Jan. 31 in Los Angeles, California. Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

The Lakers honored Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna Bryant, in a pregame ceremony before playing the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday night, after both died in a helicopter crash over Calabasas, California last Sunday.

On the court: LeBron James "read the names of the nine who departed tragically in Calabasas, bringing a city to its knees," the Los Angeles Times reports, and fans burst into emotional chants of “Gi-Gi! Gi-Gi!” and "Ko-be! Ko-be!"

“Now, I know at some point we will have a memorial for Kobe, but I’m looking at this as a celebration tonight. This is a celebration of the 20 years, of the blood, the sweat, the tears, the broken-down body, the getting up, the sitting down, the countless hours, the determination to be as great as he could be ... tonight we celebrate the kid that came here at 18 years of age, retired at 38 and became probably the best dad that we’ve seen over the last three years, man.”
— excerpt from LeBron James' pregame speech
In this image, yellow roses spell out "24" to honor Bryant's jersey letter
LeBron James pays tribute to Kobe Bryant. Photo: Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images
In this image, Lakers fans wear Bryant jerseys at the game
Fans wear Kobe Bryant jerseys at the Lakers-Trail Blazers game. Photo: Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images
In this image, roses and candles are strewn across pavement outside the stadium.
Flowers, hats, t-shirts, shoes and memory boards across from Staples Center. Photo: Keith Birmingham/MediaNews Group/Pasadena Star-News via Getty Images
In this image, Lakers fans watch TVs with the 24 jersey number honoring Kobe
Los Angeles watches the pregame ceremony, across from Staples Center. Photo: Keith Birmingham/MediaNews Group/Pasadena Star-News via Getty Images
In this image, a line of jerseys sit courtside in Staples Center
The Laker's jerseys, and Kobe's "24" jersey, draped with flowers court side. Photo: Harry How/Getty Images
In this image, a large crowd of flowers and memorial objects are littered in a pile outside
Kobe's memorial outside Staples Center. Photo: Mark Ralston/AFP via Getty Images
In this image, the lights are dimmed on the court as a large 8 and 24 are displayed next to each other
Usher sings "Amazing Grace" during the pregame ceremony. Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
In this image, the Lakers sit next to each other, offering emotional support during the pregame ceremony, sitting courtside and wearing Kobe jerseys
LeBron James, Quinn Cook and teammates look on during the pregame ceremony. Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
In this image, Lebron James points points upwards while on the court
LeBron James points at Kobe Bryant's two retired jerseys in the rafters. Photo: Harry How/Getty Images

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