LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — The Los Angeles Kings began their Wednesday night game with a tribute to Kobe Bryant, his daughter, and those who lost their lives in the tragic helicopter crash in Calabasas.

The team held a pregame ceremony honoring the nine people killed Sunday, including the Lakers legend, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna.

Kings captain Anze Kopitar and his teammates all chose to wear Bryant’s jersey as they arrived at Staples Center.

“We felt like we had to pay some sort of tribute,” Kopitar said. “Tonight, every player got a jersey and it’s a little unorthodox for our dress code but we walked in with Kobe jerseys to pay our respects in that regard.”

“He was a champion. He was the ultimate champion,” he said.

The team also wore hearts on their helmets during the game sporting “Kobe” and “Gigi.”

Along with Bryant and Gianna, the tribute John Altobelli, the head baseball coach at Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa, his wife Keri and their 13-year-old daughter Alyssa, one of Gianna’s teammates. 45-year-old Sarah Chester and her 13-year-old daughter Payton — another teammate — were aboard as well, along with 38-year-old Christina Mauser, one of Bryant’s assistant coaches, and pilot 50-year-old Ara Zobayan.

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