This is absolutely heartbreaking. Just 24 hours after news spread of Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter’s fatal helicopter crash, an old interview of the athlete has resurfaced that makes the horrific situation sting just a little bit more. In the clip, which took place on Jimmy Kimmel Live in October 2018, the former L.A. Lakers star opened up about his daughter Gianna Maria-Onore Bryant’s love of basketball, and how she had big plans to follow in her father’s legendary footsteps.
“The best thing that happens is when we go out and fans will come up to me and she’ll be standing next to me and they’ll be like, ‘You’ve got to have a boy. You and [wife Vanessa Bryant] have to have a boy. You have to have someone to carry on the family tradition, the legacy’ and she’ll be like, ‘Oh hey, I’ve got this.’ And I’m like, ‘Yes you do. You’ve got this,'” he shared.
Gianna certainly had lofty goals set for herself, including making it to the WNBA, and she had the perfect mentor to get her there. Bryant revealed in the clip that he served as the coach for his daughter’s basketball team and focused on teaching the girls lessons that could be applicable in all stages of life.
“We try to teach the kids what excellence looks like. Some of them may want to play in the WNBA, some of them may not. But we try to give them a foundation of the amount of work and preparation that it takes to be excellent in whatever it is that you choose to do,” he explained. “If we’re here playing basketball, we’re going to focus on the details. We’re going to learn the basics. We’re going to learn the fundamentals. We’re going to do those things over and over. And hopefully it’s something they can apply to other areas in their life.”
Bryant and his daughter died on Jan. 26 in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, CA, that took the lives of approximately nine individuals. The basketball star’s wife Vanessa Bryant and three other daughters, Natalia, 17, Bianka, 3, and Capri, 7 months, were not on board.