The NBA All-Star Game will take place in Chicago in a little more than two weeks, and following the untimely passing of Kobe Bryant, Gianna Bryant, and seven more in a helicopter crash in California, questions popped up about what the NBA would do to honor those whose lives were tragically lost. We got a glimpse into one change to the game on Thursday, and on Friday, we learned that both of the squads will wear uniform numbers that pay homage to the Bryants.
The league put out a press release indicating that the jerseys worn by the team captained by LeBron James will wear No. 2, the number worn by Gianna during her up-and-coming hoops career. Giannis Antetokounmpo’s squad, meanwhile, will wear No. 24, the number that Kobe wore during his final 10 seasons in the NBA. Beyond this tribute, both uniforms will feature a patch that honors all nine lives that were lost in the crash.
It had already been announced that the league will change up how the game is scored in an attempt to remember Bryant and raise money for charity. Essentially, the team that has the highest point total at the end of each of the first three quarters gets $100,000. Then, the scores are tallied together, and the winning side will be the one that reaches a target score of “whatever the team with the most points has, plus 24.” The team that hits that point total first will win $200,000 for charity.
With how much Bryant meant to the game, it stands to reason there will be more tributes to him over the course of the weekend, whether they’re announced by the league or done by players participating in the various events.