LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – Staples Center has often been referred to over the years as “the House that Kobe built.”
On Tuesday, news broke that Staples Center will be renamed to Crypto.com Arena, in the largest naming rights deal ever, estimated at $700 million.
Staples Center’s owner, the Anschutz Entertainment Group, is expected to make the formal announcement Wednesday.
Kobe Bryant played his entire 20-year NBA career with the Lakers from 1996 to 2016, bringing the storied franchise five NBA championships. Staples Center opened in 1999, just a few years into his career.
Following the news Tuesday night, his widow, Vanessa Bryant, took to Instagram to react to the name change. She shared a photo of Staples and wrote, “Forever known as the house that Kobe built.”
On Jan. 26, 2020, a helicopter carrying Lakers legend Bryant, his daughter Gianna and seven others crashed in heavy fog in Calabasas, killing all nine people aboard.
Last year, the L.A. City Council considered renaming a stretch of Figueroa Street which runs alongside Staples Center to Kobe Bryant Boulevard. However, the vote was tabled.