There was not a dry eye in the room during Friday’s Hall of Fame induction ceremony as Vanessa Bryant took the stage on behalf of her late, great husband, Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant. In a moving speech, Vanessa also shared the one most important lesson she believes we can all learn from Kobe (h/t Arash Markazi on Twitter):
“You once told me, ‘if you’re going to bet on someone, bet on yourself,’” Vanessa said. “I’m glad you bet on yourself, you overachiever.”
There were a few giggles in the room as Vanessa injected a bit of comedic relief into her message. However, her tone quickly turned somber as she addressed Kobe: “You did it. You’re in the Hall of Fame now,” Vanessa added. “You’re a true champ. You’re not just an MVP. You’re an all-time great. I’m so proud of you. I love you forever and always, Kobe ‘Bean’ Bryant.”
Vanessa Bryant is such an incredible public speaker. pic.twitter.com/apsK17z9hU — Arash Markazi (@ArashMarkazi) May 15, 2021. Vanessa was clearly holding back the tears as she delivered a truly memorable acceptance speech on behalf of her late husband. All of a sudden, we are reminded of how we lost a legend too soon. It’s been more than a year now since Kobe’s untimely passing, but moments such as these just bring back all the emotions.
On Friday, Kobe’s eldest daughter, Natalia Bryant, put on her father’s Hall of Fame jacket in another emotional moment. Kobe Bryant’s Hall of Fame induction has fittingly become a family affair for those he left behind, and we all expected nothing less.
We miss you, Kob. Rest in peace, legend.