The entire world is still reeling from the tragic news that retired basketball superstar Kobe Bryant and her thirteen-year-old daughter Gianna tragically passed away after the helicopter they were on crashed in Calabasas, California.
Everyone around the globe mourned the untimely demise of the sports icon, but not much so as the ones that knew him personally. During a television segment with Ernie Johnson, Charles Barkley, and Dwayne Wade, Shaquille O’Neal, Kobe’s former Laker teammate who he shares three NBA titles with went on a heartfelt and heartbreaking talk about the entire situation.
Things got emotional real quick as Shaq started to reminisce about his time with Kobe and the what-could-have-been if the tragic incident didn’t happen like them fooling around when Kobe is finally inducted in the Hall of Fame. The most striking was when Shaq revealed that he had lost loved ones recently, and now he had lost a little brother.
“I haven’t felt a pain that sharp in a while…”
The former Laker big man also shared that we should never take anything for granted because we never know when we or our loved ones will go.
“We’re up here, we work a lot. And I think a lot of times, we take stuff for granted. I don’t talk to you guys as much as I needed to.” O’Neal added.
Shaq went on to share how he got the news of Kobe’s untimely passing. He said that his nephew showed him his phone about the news and at first he didn’t believe it because hoaxing celebrity deaths has been a thing for a while now. It only dawned on O’Neal that it was true when he received call after call from his friends and colleagues about Bryant’s passing.
The former Laker big man continued on to share his memories with Kobe and kept on reminding everyone that we should never take everything and everyone around us for granted.
Around the league, all teams that played the day honored Kobe in a myriad of ways. Some teams would exchange a 24 second and an 8-second backcourt violation; honoring Kobe’s jersey numbers, #8 and #24. Some players wrote messages in their sneakers while a lot of fans wore Kobe jerseys all throughout the day.
It is still not entirely clear what actually happened to the helicopter and why it crashed. Authorities are still investigating the actual cause of the accident.