US basketball

Vanessa, Natalia Bryant stand in for Kobe in Hall of Fame enshrinement

Delfin Dioquino
Vanessa, Natalia Bryant stand in for Kobe in Hall of Fame enshrinement

FAMILY. Vanessa (left) and Natalia Bryant represent Kobe Bryant in his posthumous induction to the Hall of Fame.

Photo from Instagram/@nbahistory

Joined by her mother Vanessa Bryant on the stage, Natalia wears the Hall of Fame jacket meant for her father Kobe

Vanessa and Natalia Bryant represented late NBA great Kobe Bryant in his enshrinement to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as part of the 2020 class.

Kobe, who died in January 2020 in a helicopter crash with his daughter Gianna and seven others, got posthumously inducted into the Hall of Fame alongside fellow NBA legends Kevin Garnett and Tim Duncan.

Joined by her mother Vanessa on the stage, Natalia wore the Hall of Fame jacket meant for her father, and also received his Hall of Fame ring.

Natalia then posed for a photo with the inductees, which also included NBA champion coach Rudy Tomjanovich, WNBA icon Tamika Catchings, and US collegiate basketball great Kim Mulkey.

Garnett and Duncan remembered Bryant during their respective press conferences, recalling the memories they have of the Los Angeles Lakers legend from their nearly two decades of battles.

“The greatest competition brings the best out of you and that was what he always did,” Duncan said.

“You always had to be at your best and bring your best from start to finish if you’re playing against him or any of his teams.”

Duncan and Bryant played 82 games against each other throughout their storied careers and met in the playoffs for six different seasons.

Garnett, meanwhile, faced Bryant in the NBA Finals twice, with the two of them winning a title each from those championship duels between the Boston Celtics and the Lakers.

“I miss him every day and what he brought not just to the game of basketball but to sports,” Garnett said. –

Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.