Kobe Bryant posthumously elected to Basketball Hall of Fame

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Kobe Bryant

In this Dec. 1, 2015 file photo Los Angeles Lakers’ Kobe Bryant smiles as he jogs to the bench during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Philadelphia 76ers in Philadelphia. The Retired NBA superstar has died in helicopter crash in Southern California, Sunday, Jan. 26, 2020. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

“In 2020, the basketball community has suffered the unimaginable loss of iconic figures Commissioner David Stern and Kobe Bryant, as well as the game itself due to COVID-19,” the hall of fame’s CEO said.

(NBC NEWS) –– Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett and six others will forever be basketball legends as they will enshrined in the halls of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts.

The Hall of Fame’s announcement was delayed from the NCAA’s Final Four weekend in Atlanta after the tournament was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, and it comes fewer than three months after Bryant died in a helicopter crash.

John Doleva, the president and CEO of the Hall of Fame, said this class was “undoubtedly one of the most historic of all time,” especially during a period of tragedy and hardship for basketball.

“In 2020, the basketball community has suffered the unimaginable loss of iconic figures Commissioner David Stern and Kobe Bryant, as well as the game itself due to COVID-19,” Doleva said. “We have also banded together like never before in appreciation of the game and those who have made it the uniting force it is today.”

Bryant’s election comes a little over two months after he and his daughter died in a fiery helicopter crash in California.

“He was one of the greatest competitors who stepped on the court and made sure his impact was felt on both sides of the ball,” the Hall of Fame said of Bryant.

This is a developing story; please check back for updates

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