NBA 2K20 and Gamers Pay Tribute To Late Kobe Bryant

Both the development team and the game's players of NBA 2K20 came up with their way of paying tribute to the late basketball icon Kobe Bryant.

January 26, 2020

It was a somber day in the basketball world (both real and digitally in NBA 2K20) as the sport lost one of its greatest stars. Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna Bryant, 13, were among several people who died in a helicopter crash Sunday morning in Calabasas, California. Bryant was 41.

The news sent a shockwave through the NBA and beyond as millions across the world collectively mourned the death of a once-in-a-lifetime athlete. Tributes poured in from fellow athletes and coaches, celebrities, and the countless number of fans, both young and old, that he’s inspired throughout his career.


That includes the development team for NBA 2K20 (the best-selling game of 2019), and even the game’s passionate players, who have found a unique way to pay their respects. The game has already been updated so that players will see a pop-up screen paying tribute to Bryant upon booting it up. The same image can also be seen on billboards throughout NBA 2K20’s MyPlayer online hub, “The Neighborhood.”

Players, meanwhile, have been seen assembling in the Neighborhood’s park, dawning yellow Los Angeles Lakers gear while marching together around the courts.

Born in Philadelphia and drafted to the NBA directly out of Lower Merion High School, Bryant enjoyed a 20-year professional career (all with the Lakers), where he established himself as one of basketball’s greatest players ever.

It’s been no secret that the NBA 2K series has long been a fan of the Lakers legend. He was the game’s cover star for its 2K10 edition. Then, after he retired following the 2015-16 season, 2K Sports paid tribute to Bryant’s incredible run by putting him back on the front of the box for NBA 2K17’s Legend Edition.

NBA 2K17’s MyCareer mode also featured a touching intro video that starred actor Michael B. Jordan alongside the five-time NBA Champion, highlighting Bryant’s legacy to set the stage for the one players would build for themselves in the game.

Bryant is survived by his wife Vanessa. They had four daughters together.


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