Gilbert Arenas on Realizing Kobe Bryant Was With His Daughter in the Plane Crash: “That Hurt More”

Published 01/02/2022, 9:00 AM EST
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – DECEMBER 29: Kobe Bryant and daughter Gianna Bryant attend a basketball game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Dallas Mavericks at Staples Center on December 29, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Allen Berezovsky/Getty Images)


Kobe Bryant was one of the best players of his generation and has continued to inspire the next generation as well. He spent 20 years with the Lakers and won five NBA championships with them. Kobe’s competitiveness and brilliance on the court have inspired fans all around the globe. Unfortunately, we lost him and his daughter, Gianna, in a helicopter crash in January 2020.

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Former Washington Wizards star Gilbert Arenas and Kobe were contemporaries for 12 years in the NBA. They didn’t play alongside each other in the NBA, but they had mutual respect for each other.

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – NOVEMBER 17: Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna Bryant attend a basketball game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Atlanta Hawks at Staples Center on November 17, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Allen Berezovsky/Getty Images)

The crash at Calabasas nearly 2 years ago killed nine passengers aboard, including Kobe and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna. It shocked the entire world, especially NBA players who idolized Kobe and his Mamba Mentality. Gilbert Arenas was shocked after hearing the news and he recently revealed that Gianna alongside on the plane hurt him more.

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Gilbert Arenas was hurt more after realizing Gianna was with Kobe Bryant in the crash

Former Wizards star Gilbert Arenas recently gave an interview on VladTV. During the interview, he was asked about how he felt after hearing the news of the unfortunate crash. To this, Arenas replied that Gianna, alongside Kobe in the plane crash, hurt him more.

“Reality kicked in its like ‘Oh s**t they play at nine o’clock. Their game’s at nine o’clock and also I was the first one to realize his kids possibly was with him,” Gilbert Arenas said.

“And I remember I wrote it and I was like ‘Oh man I think the other passengers was his kids’ and then someone commented like ‘You don’t know that why would you put that kind of energy out there’. That’s ‘Oh s**t you’re right, I don’t know that and then boom erased it. Then thought about it like ‘No his daughter, at least one would be because she plays’. Yeah, and it did not even, that hurt more.”

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Arenas spent 12 years in the NBA and faced Kobe on several occasions. They were competitors on the court and had a lot of respect for each other off it. The news of Kobe and his daughter’s tragic accident shocked Arenas.

Kobe was not just an athlete. His journey from an athlete to a businessman is also inspirational and fans admire him for that. In fact, just a few years after his retirement, he won an Oscar for the Best Animated Short Film. This shows how dedicated he was to his work, be it basketball or business.

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Abhishek Singh

410 articles

Abhishek is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports with over two years of journalistic experience with Chase Your Sport and Dribl. A Football Management graduate, he has previously interned in the Indian Super League, I-League and the AFC Champions League. In addition to being a Michael Jordan fan, Abhishek is an ardent Steph Curry and Warriors guy, and believes they have a few more championships in store before the former retires.

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