Erving: "I don't think Kobe Bryant's situation is like Russell's"

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Erving: "I don't think Kobe Bryant's situation is like Russell's"

NBA, through commissioner Adam Silver, has decided to permanently withdraw the No. 6 belonging to Bill Russell for all franchises. The decision made by Silver has raised approval and controversy. Many fans and insiders believe the NBA should do the same for Kobe Bryant who died tragically and prematurely in late January 2020.

Julius Erving, on the issue, told: "I love Kobe, mind you, but I don't think his situation needs to be compared. to that of Russell. The farewell to Kobe is still too fresh, perhaps in this perspective it can be evaluated later in time.

Bill was 86 years old, he won what he won, as a player and as a coach, he was a champion and an example both on and off the pitch. Honestly I wouldn't even begin to compare Kobe Bryant to Bill Russell. In my opinion it is right that Kobe is celebrated by his franchise: they have already retired on 8 and 24 and it is right that they are, no one at the Lakers will ever be able to wear them again, but I don't think the league should do the same.

Bill Russell? A special person: what he did for basketball I believe cannot be matched by anyone else. I'm glad Silver made this decision."

Kobe Bryant's death

At 9:06 am PDT on Jan.26, 2020, Bryant, his thirteen-year-old daughter Gianna, and seven other people took off from Orange County-John Wayne, Calif., Aboard the Sikorsky S-76B branded N72EX helicopter.

of the player. The aircraft crashed in Calabasas at about 9:47 am, catching fire. Los Angeles County firefighters put out the fire at 10:30 am, confirming the deaths of all passengers. According to the first reports the helicopter crashed due to the thick fog.

On February 7, the strictly private funeral was held at the Pacific View Memorial Park in Corona del Mar, California, after which Bryant and her daughter were buried. A public commemoration was held on February 24 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, where ordinary people, many personalities from the world of NBA basketball and friends of Bryant gathered.

During the ceremony, Christina Aguilera performed in Ave Maria, Alicia Keys playing Beethoven and Beyoncé's Moonlight Sonata on the piano, with a medley of Halo and XO. The latter has been defined as one of Bryant's favorite songs, to which the singer has made changes to the text during the performance, omitting references to crashes or death present in the verses of the song.