Lakers: Kobe Honored With Tribute in Philadelphia (Video)


Philadelphia pulled out all of the stops to honor Kobe Bryant in his last game in his hometown

The Los Angeles Lakers and Kobe Bryant made the trip to take on the Philadelphia 76ers on Tuesday night in what was Kobe’s final game in his hometown. Everyone expected some sort of pomp and circumstances in the Wells Fargo Center to honor Kobe, but they really pulled out all the stops.

It started with the player intros where the lights dimmed and Kobe was introduced to the crowd as if he were one of the Sixers, though he is one of their own. In fact, you could argue that the intro was even more affecting than Bryant’s intro in Los Angeles on Sunday night after he made the announcement about his retirement.

After the intros, the Sixers held a short ceremony to send Kobe off the right way. Julius “Dr. J” Irving came out onto the court and presented Bryant with his framed high school jersey from Lower Merion:

Having one legend of the game be part of a gesture to a retiring legend is a pretty amazing sight. However, it wasn’t even the coolest thing that Philly had in store for Kobe.

The Sixers also aired a tribute video to Bryant entitled “Dear Kobe:”

Man, that’s about as perfect as a video package gets. It hits every note that needed to be hit from his hometown: how Philadelphia helped shape him, how he affected Philadelphia throughout his career, and how the city respects the Philadelphia product for all he’s done. The line “we knew you before the world did” hits home on an emotional level that really ties everything together.

Granted, this is Kobe’s hometown we are talking about, but you have to wonder what other tributes will look like in other arenas. What will the reaction in Boston be like? How about his final game in STAPLES?

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There’s no escaping the fact that these last few months with Kobe are going to be filled with emotion at every stop. However, Philadelphia certainly set the bar high on Tuesday night.