But now King James, 35, will forever linked with Bryant, 41, when he chose to leave Cleveland again and join the Lakers and is the franchise player and most recognizable star in Los Angeles after Bryant’s passing.
James, in a lengthy post to Instagram, said he was “heartbroken and devastated” by the deaths of Bryant and his daughter Sunday in a helicopter crash and that he has “much more I want to say but just can’t right now because I can’t get through it.”
“I literally just heard your voice Sunday morning before I left Philly to head back to LA,” James wrote. “Didn’t think for one bit in a million years that would be the last conversation we’d have.”
“I’m Not Ready but here I go,” James begins. “Man I sitting here trying to write something for this post but every time I try I begin crying again just thinking about you, niece Gigi and the friendship/bond/brotherhood we had!
“WTF!! I’m heartbroken and devastated my brother!! 😢😢😢😢💔. Man I love you big bro. My heart goes to Vanessa and the kids. I promise you I’ll continue your legacy man! You mean so much to us all here especially #LakerNation💜💛 and it’s my responsibility to put this s— on my back and keep it going!!”
King James is now prepared to wear the crown and the responsibility that comes with it, that Bryant wore as the most popular and recognizable athlete in Los Angeles, by far.
“Please give me the strength from the heavens above and watch over me! I got US here! There’s so much more I want to say but just can’t right now because I can’t get through it! Until we meet again my brother!! #Mamba4Life❤️🙏🏾 #Gigi4Life❤️🙏🏾.”