The calendar has turned to March, and NBA fans are focusing on the race for the postseason. There are multiple teams fighting for the final spot in the Western Conference, which is drawing considerable attention. The playoff hunt is exciting, but the fans are still struggling to come to terms with a tragic incident back in January.
As social media continues to show, there are countless NBA fans still in shock over the Jan. 26 helicopter crash that claimed the lives of Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna, and seven other victims. They couldn't believe that this incident had taken place more than one month prior and often struggle with the realization that the victims are gone.
Fans of the Los Angeles Lakers and Bryant made it clear following his death that they wouldn't forget him and the impact that he made on the world. This has been proven true in recent weeks with constant posts on social media.
That being, many more fans are continuing to wake up each day with the realization that Bryant is truly gone. They are similarly expressing this disbelief on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
I still can’t believe @kobebryant is no longer with us 😭 but to be with the Lord is everything!!!— 💜Miss April💛💜Miss Hall💛 (@shesblessedmuch) March 2, 2020
Bryant is no longer alive, and the fans are devastated by that fact. They still miss seeing him smile while sitting courtside at Lakers games or while he was coaching his daughters.
While many of these fans are struggling with the fact that Bryant is gone, they are taking solace in their faith. They believe that he, Gianna, and the other victims are in a better place.
Somehow I found myself on Kobe Bryant Instagram, the God really gone man smh— CHILL GOD DEE 🏁 (@The_Chillest_) March 2, 2020
When Oregon Ducks basketball player Sabrina Ionescu spoke at Bryant's celebration of life memorial, she mentioned that she had texted him. The messages had gone through but there was no response. She said that she sometimes finds herself still waiting.
This is not a feeling that is exclusive to Ionescu. Several of Bryant's fans have gone to his social media profiles in hopes of seeing another post surface. It could be complex or simple, but they just want to see him post again.
I still can’t believe Kobe Bryant is gone like this still feels unreal, how u here one day and gone the next in a snap of a finger— Shaqtin a fool🥊🦍 (@shaqtin24) March 2, 2020
One moment, Bryant was heading to coach a basketball tournament at the Mamba Academy. The next, he was gone. There are fans that are aware of how quickly this tragic incident took place, but they are still in a state of disbelief.
Several users on Twitter posted similar messages on Monday as they struggled to grasp the reality of post-Bryant life. As one fan wrote: "Still can't fathom that Kobe Bryant is gone."
Kobe is REALLY gone! I still can’t believe that..
Kobe Bryant really passed away..
THE Kobe Bryant..
😣🥺😢— King Midas IV (@Camaro_Cali) March 2, 2020
When a prominent figure reaches a level of influence or celebrity, they are often viewed as untouchable by their fans. Not in the sense of looking down on others, but in a sense of being seemingly everlasting.
There were several NBA fans that viewed Bryant in such a manner. They expected him to grow old and continue making an influence on future generations for many years to come. The helicopter crash changed that belief and left many in shock.
Your brain ever just randomly decide you need a reminder that Kobe Bryant is really gone?... pic.twitter.com/8JCMMt617c— Wade Teltoe (@Tweettoes18) March 2, 2020
As several fans have learned in the wake of Bryant's death, the memories of the late NBA icon can arise at any moment. They may be focused on something else, but he will suddenly pop into their brains and cause heartache.
This has certainly been the case with many of Bryant's fans. Anytime they see something that was previously associated with the former Lakers star, they will automatically think of his death.
I just stared at a picture of Kobe Bryant for two minutes like, wow he’s really gone— De’Anna (@ShesNeon) March 1, 2020
Fans of Bryant have dealt with his death in a variety of ways, including getting tattoos to pay tribute to him. Some have quietly stared at countless photos from his NBA career and thought about the impact that he made on future generations of players.
Sometimes, these moments of reflection have been interrupted by disbelief over Bryant's death. Many of these fans have perused the images for minutes on end and struggled to accept that he is gone.
I can’t believe Kobe Bryant is dead. Gone. Like we’re only going to be able tell our kids about him.— HeyMaid✨ (@titygirl_) March 2, 2020
There are certain players in NBA history that have been viewed as the best among their peers. These are the figures that have been used to teach up and coming players about the best way to approach the game.
Until his death on Jan. 26, Bryant was one of these figures, but he was able to give speeches to future generations about everything he learned during his 20-year career. This is no longer possible, and the parents and coaches will have to find different ways to teach young players about Bryant.
(Photo Credit: Harry How/Getty Images)