Celtics Legend Bill Russell Puts on Lakers Jersey to Honor Kobe Bryant

Published 12/22/2020, 5:39 PM EST
LOS ANGELES, CA – JANUARY 26: Laker’s Kobe Bryant ,24, celebrates a three pointer in the fourth quarter as the Lakers beat the Nuggets 122-107 during a first round playoff basketball game between the Denver Nuggets and the Los Angeles Lakers April 23. 2008 at Staples Center in Los Angeles. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)

In just a few hours, the 2020-21 NBA season will kick off. The league made a special announcement prior to the tip-off for this season. They will be conducting the first-ever NBA jersey day to encourage fans to wear their favorite players’ jerseys. As expected, many fans will be rocking the jersey of Lakers legend Kobe Bryant.


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However, it is not a fan or a current NBA player who won the hearts of everyone. It’s the legendary Bill Russell who surprised NBA fans with a heart-warming gesture.
“Thinking of my friend #Kobe #NBAJerseyDay”


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Thinking of my friend #Kobe #NBAJerseyDay@NBA⁩ ⁦@Lakers⁩ ⁦@celticspic.twitter.com/fq9VHyvXag

— TheBillRussell (@RealBillRussell) December 22, 2020

It is a known fact that the Lakers and Celtics are arguably the biggest rivals in the NBA. However, when it comes to showing respect to a late legend like Kobe Bryant, rivalries are put aside and it’s all love. Russell, who won 11 NBA titles with the Celtics, proved it today with his kind gesture.

Basketball fans display tremendous love for Kobe Bryant on first-ever NBA Jersey Day

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Lakers guard Kobe Bryant chews on his jersey for a few seconds as he runs downcourt against the San Antonio Spurs at Staples Center. (Photo by Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
Although Bill Russell’s gesture definitely received the most love, Russell was not the only one who paid tribute to Kobe. Numerous Black Mamba fans paid tribute to Kobe Bryant on Twitter in their favorite jerseys of the late legend.

#NBAJerseyDay We the Champs🏆 miss you Kobe 🐍💜💛 pic.twitter.com/yfq7RlTGy8

— DodgerHunt27 (@Senseihunter51) December 22, 2020


Bron for the 1st half.
Kobe for the 2nd half. @Lakers pic.twitter.com/mv3N7uts5p

— Coach Shinholster (@CoachShinWins9) December 22, 2020

#NBAJerseyDay @Lakers @kobebryant 🙏🏾🐍 pic.twitter.com/O022fgtHMo

— J. Baker (@Hey_BigHead_) December 22, 2020

I heard it’s #NBAJerseyDay #Nba Opening Night #MambaMentality pic.twitter.com/qW9DNIJeJY

— puma (@Puma213) December 22, 2020


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As expected, the Black Mamba received a tremendous amount of love from NBA fans. Several fans displayed their love for him and flaunted their precious jerseys. This was a terrific idea on the league’s part.
If this goes well, maybe the league might make it an annual thing. Thus, each year, fans can get a chance to flaunt their favorite players’ jerseys. Along with a chance to get featured on live TV on the opening day of the season.


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Speaking of the opening night for the season, the Lakers will feature on double-header opening night. They will go up against their rivals LA Clippers in their first game of the season. If the Lakers can start their season on a winning note, it will yet another tribute to their franchise legend, Kobe Bryant.


Aikansh Chaudhary

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Aikansh Chaudhary is an NBA columnist for Essentially Sports. Previously, he helped rank various websites using the latest SEO techniques, and wrote over 2000 articles during his stint as a freelance writer. A die hard Lakers fan, Aikansh will forever uphold LeBron James as the GOAT.


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