Empire State Building lit up purple and gold for LA Lakers legend Kobe Bryant

The Empire State Building was lit up purple and gold as a tribute to tragic LA Lakers legend Kobe Bryant on Monday night.

Bryant, 41, and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna were killed along with seven others when the helicopter they were travelling in crashed in Calabasas, California on Sunday morning.

Regarded as one of the greatest basketball players of all time, Bryant spent his entire 20-year career with the Lakers, winning five NBA championships and breaking the franchise’s all-time scoring records.

And as the sporting world mourned the loss of one of its greats on Monday, New York landmark the Empire State Building paid its own homage as it was lit up in the purple and gold colours of the Lakers.

The NBA postponed the Lakers’ match against LA Clippers

on Tuesday in the wake of Bryant’s untimely death.

The Empire State Building was lit up in th colours of the LA Lakers in tribute to Kobe Bryant
Bryant and his daughter Gianna were tragically killed in a helicopter crash alongside seven others
(Image: USA TODAY Sports)

Both teams were due to meet at the Staples Center on Tuesday, but is now due to be rescheduled at a later date.

An official statement from the NBA said: “The decision was made out of respect for the Lakers organization, which is deeply grieving the tragic loss of Lakers legend Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna and seven other people in a helicopter crash on Sunday.”

Thousands of Lakers fans flocked outside the Staples Center on Sunday after the news of Bryant’s death broke, laying flowers and memorabilia in an emotional memorial to the superstar.

The tribute lit up the city as night fell in New York
(Image: Twitter)
Social media users shared pictures of the purple and gold Empire State Building
(Image: @its_nataliex /Twitter)

LA Clippers paid their own tribute to the All-star legend during their match with Orlando Magic, letting the 24-second shot-clock run down.

Among those who also died were Orange Coast College baseball coach John Altobelli, 56, his wife Keri, their daughter Alyssa and Harbor Day School assistant coach Christina Mauser.

Another young player, Payton Chester, was also killed in the crash along with her mother Sarah Chester, along with pilot Ara Zobayan.

The famous New York landmark paid homage as the sporting world mourned the loss of one of the greatest basketball players of all time
(Image: @TheodoreVMD /Twitter)
Bryant spent his entire 20-year career with the Lakers, breaking the franchise’s scoring records
(Image: Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Gianna and Alyssa were teammates at the Mamba Academy and were flying from Orange County to Thousand Oaks to attend a game, OCC assistant coach Ron La Ruffa told CNN.

Reports have emerged claiming that the helicopter flying Bryant and Co plummeted nearly 500 feet in just 15 seconds before smashing into an LA hillside.

Read More

Kobe Bryant dies aged 41

Flight radars show the helicopter circle around for 15 minutes and tried to turn before crashing.

Recovery work at the crash site is expected to take several days and a five-mile no-fly zone has been set up by the FAA.

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