The Sporting world was hit by the tragic news of the passing of five-time NBA champion Kobe Bryant.
The 41-year old and his 13-year old daughter Gianna Maria-Onore Bryant were killed in a helicopter crash. The Crash also killed six other passengers.
Majority owner of Dallas Mavericks, Mark Cuban, in a statement released Sunday evening, stated that the Mavericks organisation will retire the No. 24 jersey in honour of Kobe Bryant.
Dallas Mavericks Owner Mark Cuban issued the following statement on the passing of Kobe and Gianna Bryant. pic.twitter.com/Ua41YrvTMZ
— Mavs PR (@MavsPR) January 27, 2020
“We are shocked and saddened by the devastating news of the passing of Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna.
“Kobe was an ambassador for our game, a decorated legend and a global icon. Above all, he was a loving and dedicated father.
“Kobe’s legacy transcends basketball, and our organization has decided that the number 24 will never again be work by a Dallas Maverick.
“Our hearts go out to all the lives lost and the families impacted by this terrible tragedy. We send our thoughts and prayers to Vanessa and the family, the Lakers organization and Kobe Bryant fans everywhere.”
The 18-time all-star has wore the No. 8 and No. 24 jersey throughout his career. The No. 24 jersey was also his jersey number during his high school career. He switched to the No. 24 jersey later in his career for a fresh start.
“It’s a new book, 24 — 24 is every day. Because when you get older, your muscles start getting sore. Body starts aching. You show up to practice that day, you have to remind yourself, ‘OK, this day is the most important day. I got to push through this soreness. My ankles are tight, they won’t get loose. I got to go through it, because this is the most important day.’ So, 24 also helped me from a motivational standpoint.” (H/T – Fox News)
The Mavericks organisation have retired the three jersey numbers so far i.e Rolando Blackman (22), Derek Harper (12) and Brad Davis (15) and now Kobe Bryant will be the last.
Mavericks players who have previously played with the No. 24 jerseys are Mark Aguirre (1982-1989), Jim Jackson (1993-1997), Hubert Davis (1998-2001), Pavel Podkolzin (2005-2006) and Richard Jefferson (2015).