The National Basketball Association (NBA), Commissioner Adam Silver announced on Saturday that the All-Star Game MVP would be named in honor of the late Kobe Bryant.
“I know it will be especially meaningful to that player that wins the first Kobe Bryant MVP,” silver said.
The 18-time All-Star and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna was among the nine people that died in a helicopter crash outside of Los Angeles on Jan. 26.
Bryant made 18 consecutive All-Star Games from 1998 to 2016 and won the game’s MVP four times – in 2002, 2007, 2009 and 2011.
Commissioner Adam Silver announced that the NBA All-Star Game MVP Award will be renamed the Kobe Bryant MVP Award. pic.twitter.com/bcclrRsk4X— NBA TV (@NBATV) February 16, 2020
Bryant is only one of two players in NBA history to have earned the All-Star MVP on four occasions, the other being Hall of Famer Bob Pettit.
“To all of us, it seemed like the appropriate way to bring honor to him,” Silver said.
In addition to naming the MVP trophy in Bryant’s honor, the game itself will feature a series of tributes too. Players on Team LeBron will sport No. 2 in honor of Gianna while Team Gianni’s superstars will have Kobe’s No. 24 stitched onto their uniforms.