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24 powerful photos by which to remember Kobe Bryant

Former NBA star went straight from HS to the league; spent all 20 seasons with Lakers

Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna Bryant attend a basketball game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Atlanta Hawks at the Staples Center on Nov. 17, 2019.
Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna Bryant attend a basketball game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Atlanta Hawks at the Staples Center on Nov. 17, 2019. (2019 Getty Images)

Kobe Bryant, an 18-time All-Star who won five NBA championships and became one of the greatest basketball players of his generation during a 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers, died in a helicopter crash Sunday.

He was 41.

The crash took place in the foggy hills above Calabasas, California, about 30 miles northwest of downtown LA, according to the Associated Press.

Bryant’s 13-year-old daughter Gianna also died.

In no particular order -- and yes, we realize these are a little out of order -- we’ve rounded up some photos of Bryant, to showcase his life.

Here are 23 notes to remember him by, with the pictures to prove it.


1.) His powerful presence on the court.

Kobe Bryant points in the second quarter of Game 7 in the 2010 NBA Finals against the Boston Celtics at Staples Center.
Kobe Bryant points in the second quarter of Game 7 in the 2010 NBA Finals against the Boston Celtics at Staples Center. (2010 Getty Images)

2.) His swagger.

Kobe Bryant reacts in the third quarter against the Utah Jazz at a game held April 13, 2016, in Los Angeles.
Kobe Bryant reacts in the third quarter against the Utah Jazz at a game held April 13, 2016, in Los Angeles. (2016 Getty Images)

3.) His role as a loving father.

Kobe Bryant warms up with daughter Gianna Bryant during the NBA All-Star Game 2016 at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto.
Kobe Bryant warms up with daughter Gianna Bryant during the NBA All-Star Game 2016 at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto. (2016 Getty Images)

4.) His legendary status.

Kobe Bryant walk out to center court during his jersey retirement ceremony at  halftime of a game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Golden State Warriors on Dec. 18, 2017.
Kobe Bryant walk out to center court during his jersey retirement ceremony at halftime of a game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Golden State Warriors on Dec. 18, 2017. (2017 Getty Images)

5.) His intensity.

Kobe Bryant, No. 24 on the Los Angeles Lakers, looks on against the Washington Wizards in the first half of a game at Verizon Center on Dec. 2, 2015.
Kobe Bryant, No. 24 on the Los Angeles Lakers, looks on against the Washington Wizards in the first half of a game at Verizon Center on Dec. 2, 2015. (2015 Getty Images)

6.) His pure athleticism.

Kobe Bryant dunks with his left hand in the third quarter against the New Orleans Hornets in Game 5 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs.
Kobe Bryant dunks with his left hand in the third quarter against the New Orleans Hornets in Game 5 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs. (2011 Getty Images)

7.) His smile.

Then-President Barack Obama, at right, poses for photos with Kobe Bryant and members of the NBA 2009 champion Los Angeles Lakers -- this was taken in the East Room of the White House on Jan. 25, 2010.
Then-President Barack Obama, at right, poses for photos with Kobe Bryant and members of the NBA 2009 champion Los Angeles Lakers -- this was taken in the East Room of the White House on Jan. 25, 2010. (2010 Getty Images)

8.) His basketball IQ.

Kobe Bryant looks to make a pass between Kawhi Leonard and Boris Diaw of the San Antonio Spurs on Jan. 22, 2016.
Kobe Bryant looks to make a pass between Kawhi Leonard and Boris Diaw of the San Antonio Spurs on Jan. 22, 2016. (2016 Getty Images)

9.) His jaw-dropping stats.

Kobe Bryant addresses the media during the postgame news conference after scoring 60 point in his final NBA game at Staples Center, which happened April 13, 2016.
Kobe Bryant addresses the media during the postgame news conference after scoring 60 point in his final NBA game at Staples Center, which happened April 13, 2016. (2016 Getty Images)

10.) His many, many trips to the postseason.

Kobe Bryant drives against Arron Afflalo of the Denver Nuggets in Game 4 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals in the 2012 NBA Playoffs at Pepsi Center.
Kobe Bryant drives against Arron Afflalo of the Denver Nuggets in Game 4 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals in the 2012 NBA Playoffs at Pepsi Center. (2012 Getty Images)

11.) His storied NBA career.

Kobe Bryant speaks in a news conference after announcing his retirement at Staples Center on Nov. 29, 2015.
Kobe Bryant speaks in a news conference after announcing his retirement at Staples Center on Nov. 29, 2015. (2015 Getty Images)

12.) His wife, Vanessa Laine Bryant.

Vanessa Laine Bryant and Kobe Bryant attend the 2019 Vanity Fair Oscar Party in Beverly Hills, California.
Vanessa Laine Bryant and Kobe Bryant attend the 2019 Vanity Fair Oscar Party in Beverly Hills, California. (2019 FilmMagic)

13.) His stints on the U.S. Olympic team.

From left, LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Dwyane Wade compete against Argentina during a men's semifinal game at the Wukesong Indoor Stadium on Day 14 of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.
From left, LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Dwyane Wade compete against Argentina during a men's semifinal game at the Wukesong Indoor Stadium on Day 14 of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. (2008 Getty Images)

14.) His legacy as one of the role models in the NBA.

Kobe Bryant backs in on LeBron James in the first half of a game vs. the Cavaliers on March 10, 2016.
Kobe Bryant backs in on LeBron James in the first half of a game vs. the Cavaliers on March 10, 2016. (2016 Getty Images)

15.) We mentioned his stats but we’ll say it again: His unmatched scoring ability.

Although it’s not pictured, it was Jan. 22, 2006 when Bryant dropped 81 points against the Toronto Raptors.

Kobe Bryant celebrates after scoring 60 points in his final NBA game at Staples Center. It was April 13, 2016 and the Lakers defeated the Utah Jazz, 101-96.
Kobe Bryant celebrates after scoring 60 points in his final NBA game at Staples Center. It was April 13, 2016 and the Lakers defeated the Utah Jazz, 101-96. (2016 Getty Images)

16.) His dedication to the game.

Kobe Bryant goes out of the game as the Charlotte Hornets defeated the Los Angeles Lakers 108-98 at Time Warner Cable Arena on Dec. 28, 2015.
Kobe Bryant goes out of the game as the Charlotte Hornets defeated the Los Angeles Lakers 108-98 at Time Warner Cable Arena on Dec. 28, 2015. (2015 Getty Images)

17.) His apparent fun side.

Lin-Manuel Miranda and Kobe Bryant attend the 2018 Vanity Fair Oscar Party hosted by Radhika Jones at Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts.
Lin-Manuel Miranda and Kobe Bryant attend the 2018 Vanity Fair Oscar Party hosted by Radhika Jones at Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts. (2018 Nicholas Hunt/VF18/Getty Images)

18.) His confidence.

Kobe Bryant runs up court in the second quarter against the Denver Nuggets in Game 1 of the 2008 Western Conference Quarterfinals in LA.
Kobe Bryant runs up court in the second quarter against the Denver Nuggets in Game 1 of the 2008 Western Conference Quarterfinals in LA. (2008 Getty Images)

19.) His love for his family.

Kobe Bryant poses with his family at halftime after both his No. 8 and No. 24 Los Angeles Lakers jerseys are retired at Staples Center on Dec. 18, 2017.
Kobe Bryant poses with his family at halftime after both his No. 8 and No. 24 Los Angeles Lakers jerseys are retired at Staples Center on Dec. 18, 2017. (2017 Getty Images)

20.) His passion.

Kobe Bryant adjusts his jersey during a game vs. the Phoenix Suns at the U.S. Airways Center on Feb. 19, 2012.
Kobe Bryant adjusts his jersey during a game vs. the Phoenix Suns at the U.S. Airways Center on Feb. 19, 2012. (2012 Getty Images)

21.) His drive.

Kobe Bryant looks back in the first half while taking on the Utah Jazz at the Staples Center in April 2016.
Kobe Bryant looks back in the first half while taking on the Utah Jazz at the Staples Center in April 2016. (2016 Getty Images)

22.) His grit and tenacity as a five-time NBA champion.

Kobe Bryant waves to the crowd after he's taken out of the game in the fourth quarter against the Golden State Warriors at Oracle Arena in January 2016.
Kobe Bryant waves to the crowd after he's taken out of the game in the fourth quarter against the Golden State Warriors at Oracle Arena in January 2016. (2016 Getty Images)

23.) His winning ways.

There was no denying it -- love him or hate him, this two-time NBA Finals MVP knew how to get the job done.

Kobe Bryant reacts to the crowd as he leaves the court April 10, 2016 in Houston.
Kobe Bryant reacts to the crowd as he leaves the court April 10, 2016 in Houston. (2016 Getty Images)

24.) Bonus shot: One more of Kobe and his beautiful girl.

Kobe Bryant and daughter Gianna Bryant attend a basketball game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Dallas Mavericks on Dec. 29, 2019.
Kobe Bryant and daughter Gianna Bryant attend a basketball game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Dallas Mavericks on Dec. 29, 2019. (2019 Getty Images)

Authorities said nine people were on the helicopter Sunday, and all were presumed dead, according to the AP.

Bryant, who lived in coastal Orange County, often used helicopters to save time and avoid Southern California’s notoriously heavy traffic. He traveled to practices and games by helicopter before retiring in 2016.

He continued to travel this way after retirement as he worked on new ventures, which included an entertainment company that recently produced an Academy Award-winning animated short film, the AP said.


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