Three days after the tragic death of Kobe Bryant in a helicopter crash, the world continues to mourn. Talking in the NBA TNT’s pregame show on Tuesday, Shaquille O’Neal became emotional about his former teammate Kobe Bryant. A Los Angeles derby was to tale place on Tuesday, but the NBA postponed the game in the aftermath of Bryant’s death.
“The last couple of months have been really tough. I lost my little sister. Haven’t been doing the things I usually do. I work, we laugh, we kid, we joke. When I get back home I look at reality and say she’s gone and it hurts,” Shaq said. “So the other day I’m downstairs working with my son Shaqir and my nephew Columbus and my other nephew comes in crying and he shows me his phone and I snapped at him. I said, ‘Man get that out of my face.’”
O’Neal said that his nephew had first shown him the news of Bryant’s death. He initially thought it was another of the hoax news but was heartbroken once he confirmed it.
Shaq had already called Kobe a “little brother,” only the other day. “Our relationship was that of brothers. We are brothers,” O’Neal had said talking in The Big Podcast with Shaq: Kobe. “When I saw Kobe and his daughters, loved them. When he saw my kids, loved them. If you looked at my kids’ Instagram… he talked to [Shareef O’Neal] yesterday morning. So all the stuff that is documented between us, it was never a dislike, it’s just, listen, this is what brothers do. I have a younger brother, we fight all the time but guess what? I love him.”
Shaquille O’Neal once again referred to him as brother on Tuesday and added him in the list of family members that he has lost.
“I lost two grandmothers, lost a Sarge, lost a sister. And now I lost a little brother,” he said. “Our names will be attached together for what we did, people always asked about our relationship and I tell them it’s just like me and Charles. We got two strong-minded people who are going to get it done that way, gonna say certain things, the respect will never be lost but when it comes to be inside the lines and win, that’s’ what me and him, that’s’ what we did. That’s what me and Charles, that’s what we do.”
Shaq, with tears coming out, talked about the things he would miss with Kobe no longer in the world.