Kobe Bryant Celebration of Life: LeBron James Was Reportedly 'in His Own Space' During Public Memorial

Monday's Celebration of Life for the Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, was a resounding success marked with emotional tributes to the late NBA superstar. However, some fans had wondered if fellow Laker LeBron James had shown up at all, as he didn't make a formal appearance during the memorial. However, Twitter user Chris Camello noticed that Los Angeles Lakers writer Dave McMenamin had spoken to ESPN to offer up his insight as to why James didn't make an appearance at the memorial -- at least publicly.

"I spoke to several members of the Lakers who were there today, and they didn't see LeBron," McMenamin said on Monday night. "Rich Paul and his agent told our Stephen A. Smith that 'LeBron's in his own space.' Space could be somewhere away from Staples Center, it could be part of Staples Center.

"What I can tell you, definitively though, is that the first road game the Lakers played in Sacramento, after they got back to playing, after the tragedy, I got a chance to catch up with LeBron and touch base and see how he was doing," McMenamin continued. "He told me, in that moment, that it was the toughest week of his life. And so, me knowing that it wouldn't surprise me that he made a decision similar to yours to say: 'Of course I'm devastated. Of course, I respect Kobe Bryant, I respect his family, I respect the Lakers. For me to be the best I can be for everybody else, maybe not be involved in that today."

McMenamin added that James could've opted to sit out the Celebration of Life as a way to not take attention away from Bryant and his family, although that's purely speculative.

Tuesday, James echoed this sentiment as he addressed the issue directly after a Lakers shootaround when asked about it by a reporter.


"It was very emotional, very emotional day, very tough day for myself, for my family, for everyone involved," James explained. "It's never a closure. It's never going to be a closure. I mean, we continue to live on his legacy and continue to have our hearts heavy with both sadness and with happiness for his family that are still here.

However, James has spoken publicly about the death of Bryant, who was killed along with his daughter and seven others in a helicopter crash on Jan. 26. In the Lakers' first game after the tragedy.