Like most of us, we wished to have woken up from Sunday’s nightmare of, Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna’s tragic death. Bryant, 41 and Gianna, 13 were traveling to a basketball game at his Mamba Academy facility with 7 other passengers when his private helicopter lost control, ultimately crashing to the ground in Calabasas, CA Sunday morning. The devastating news instantly shook the world.
Kanye West took to his Midnight Sunday Service to pay tribute to the fallen icon, along with Chance The Rapper and Kirk Franklin.
West was more than a fan of Kobe’s greatness and it showed.
On “Swagger Like Us,” Ye raps:
“How it feels to wake up and be the sh*t and the urine? Trying to get that Kobe number, one over Jordan”
On Beyonce’s “Ego Remix,” Kanye raps:
“I had dreams of the league one day I play Kobe, or walk up to Puff and he’ll really know me.”
On April 13, 2016, Kobe Bryant played his final game as a Los Angeles Laker and professional basketball player. On the court, Bryant coined the term “Mamba Mentality,” after his nickname “The Black Mamba.” The sold-out Staples Center crowd, packed with celebrities, stars from all walks out of life and fans gathered to watch this global icon play his final 60 minutes of basketball. Kobe Bryant would put on a show to finish with a 60 point performance. Kanye West was in attendance. On that day, West wore a shirt dedicated to Mamba. “I Feel Like Kobe” after his “I Feel Like Pablo” merch.
In 2012, West was featured Bryant’s “Kobe Systems” campaign ad as well.
To say West was a fan of Bryant was an understatement. They embodied a similar mentality, the “Mamba Mentality.”