LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Just a few months after his passing, Lakers legend Kobe Bryant has been inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
This year marked Bryant’s first year of eligibility for the Hall of Fame. His wife, Vanessa Bryant, and their daughter Natalia told ESPN they are proud of him for achieving this momentous accomplishment.
“It’s an incredible accomplishment and honor, and we’re extremely proud of him,” Vanessa Bryant said. “Obviously we wish that he was here with us to celebrate, but it’s definitely the peak of his NBA career and every accomplishment he had as an athlete was a stepping stone to be here.”
“We’re incredibly proud of him.”
Vanessa and Natalia Bryant joined Rece Davis after Kobe’s induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame. pic.twitter.com/HX31pyvgPe
— ESPN (@espn) April 4, 2020
In February, eight finalists were announced for the honor, and the selection committee chose them all.
“The Class of 2020 is undoubtedly one of the most historic of all time and the talent and social influence of these nine honorees is beyond measure,” said John L. Doleva, President and CEO of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
“In 2020, the basketball community has suffered the unimaginable loss of iconic figures Commissioner David Stern and Kobe Bryant, as well as the game itself due to COVID-19,” he wrote in a press release. “We have also banded together like never before in appreciation of the game and those who have made it the uniting force it is today.”
An 18-time NBA All-Star and five-time NBA champion, Bryant headlines the group of inductees. The group also includes NBA greats Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett.
The other inductees are: four-time National Coach of the Year Eddie Sutton, two-time NBA Champion coach Rudy Tomjanovich, 10-time WNBA All-Star and four-time Olympic gold medalist Tamika Catchings, three-time NCAA National Championship Coach of Baylor Kim Mulkey, five-time Division II National Coach of the Year Barbara Stevens and longtime FIBA executive Patrick Baumann.
The class of 2020 inductees will be honors in Springfield, Massachusetts on Saturday, August 29.