Sabrina Ionescu Pays a Special Tribute to Kobe & Gigi Bryant Ahead of WNBA Playoffs

Published 09/24/2021, 11:30 AM EDT


Oregan’s superstar Sabrina Ionescu paid tribute to the Lakers legend Kobe Bryant. The WNBA player shared a long-time connection with the ‘Black Mamba’ and his daughter Gigi Bryant. Among others, Sabrina also remembers Kobe in different ways.

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On 26th January 2020, Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gigi died in a devastating helicopter crash. Sabrina was amongst the first acquaintances to post on social media grieving the loss of the GOAT.

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Kobe Bryant was a mentor to Sabrina Ionescu from Oregan days

Ionescu first met Bryant in Oregan Duck’s game at USC playing against the Trojans. The 5-time NBA champion walked up to the courtside with Gigi to watch Sabrina’s match. Ionescu still is in awe of that moment and ever since then, Kobe Bryant had mentored her.

Being the advocate of women’s basketball that Kobe is, he has mentored several basketball girls to expand their opportunities. In honor of the NBA icon, Sabrina recently came out wearing a custom jersey with Kobe and Gigi’s numbers on each half of it.

Ionescu’s flourishing time in the WNBA league

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Sabrina, who is currently playing for WNBA’s New York Liberty, is the first NCAA player with career 2,000 points, 1,000 assists, and 1,000 rebounds. She is also the NCAA all-time leader in career triple-doubles, and 2020 Naismith Player of the Year.

After a prominent high school career, Sabrina is impressing the league fans as well with her game. She has a 2-year career average of 12.4 points, 6.1 assists, and 5.6 rebounds. The Liberty point guard is on the lines of making an impact in WNBA as well.

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In the least season, Sabrina became the youngest player in league history to record a triple-double. That night she scored 26 points, 12 assists, and 10 rebounds to achieve the feat. Without a doubt, the young star has a long way to go with Kobe’s inspiration on her mind.

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Pavni Ahuja

531 articles

Pavni Ahuja is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. Housing a keen interest in sports journalism, she is pursuing an undergraduate Journalism degree from Christ University. Pavni is an ardent fan of the NBA, with prior district-level playing experience in basketball.

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