A "heartbroken and devastated" LeBron James addressed the death of Kobe Bryant on Monday night in his first public statement since the helicopter crash that took the life of Bryant, his daughter Gianna, and seven others.
In a post on Instagram, James recounted how he talked to fellow Los Angeles Lakers legend Bryant early Sunday. He passed Bryant to move into third place on the NBA's all-time scoring list Saturday night in Philadelphia.
"Didn't think for one bit in a million years that would be the last conversation we'd have," James wrote.
Bryant, 41, and his 13-year-old daughter died later Sunday morning in the crash in Calabasas, Calif.
"I'm Not Ready but here I go," James began his post. "Man I sitting here trying to write something for this post but every time I try I begin crying again just thinking about you, niece Gigi and the friendship/bond/brotherhood we had!"
He continued: "I literally just heard your voice Sunday morning before I left Philly to head back to LA. Didn't think for one bit in a million years that would be the last conversation we'd have. I'm heartbroken and devastated my brother."I promise you I'll continue your legacy man! You mean so much to us all here. Please give me the strength from the heavens above and watch over me! I got US here! There's so much more I want to say but just can't right now because I can't get through it! Until we meet again my brother!!"
The Lakers were scheduled to meet the Los Angeles Clippers Tuesday night at the Staples Center. The game has been postponed.