Several prominent sports figures were seen weeping in the days following the death of Los Angeles Lakers icon Kobe Bryant, including LeBron James.
Just five days after Bryant’s helicopter crashed in the Los Angeles suburbs, James was seen crying as Boyz II Men sang the national anthem. It was the Lakers’ first game back since the tragedy. Ahead of the matchup, LeBron delivered a touching tribute to Kobe:
James wasn’t the only NBA legend to shed tears after Kobe’s death. Bulls icon Michael Jordan openly wept as he delivered a speech at Bryant’s Celebration of Life ceremony. To lighten the mood a bit, His Airness actually made a joke about his tears, noting that he would have to see a new crying meme for the next few years:
There has been a stigma attached to men crying for years, but James says there is nothing wrong with showing emotion, especially in cases like this.
As part of a recent interview with Sports Illustrated, The King explained why it’s okay for men to cry:
“Men should be emotional when something hits your heart,” James told Melissa Rohlin of Sports Illustrated. “When something feels a certain way, there’s no reason you shouldn’t be emotional about it. The emotion comes from, especially in this instance, somebody who has paved the way and done so many great things in our sport.”
James is somewhat new to the Lakers family, but he has vowed to carry on Kobe’s legacy to the best of his ability:
With James and Anthony Davis on the roster, the Lakers are being viewed as one of the best teams in the NBA. At 47-13 overall, Los Angeles is currently holding the No. 1 spot in the Western Conference standings, and most experts are projecting a deep playoff run and a potential NBA title.