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2021 Basketball Hall of Fame Enshrinement Ceremony

Source: Maddie Meyer / Getty

Saturday, May 15 was bittersweet for NBA fans as the legendary Kobe Bryant was inducted into the NBA Hall of Fame. The late basketball icon’s wife, Vanessa Bryant, presented a stirring speech to honor her husband’s enshrinement among NBA legends.

Also on stage was Michael Jordan, who graciously accepted her request to be there to introduce Kobe into the Hall of Fame. Vanessa Bryant’s words were straight from the heart, and soaked in the familiarity of a loving spouse and of a mom who lost a child (GIgi Bryant).

“I used to always avoid praising my husband in public because I felt like he got enough praise from his fans around the world, and someone had to bring him back to reality,” she said candidly. “Right now, I’m sure he’s laughing in heaven because I’m about to praise him in public for his accomplishments on one of the most public stages. I can see him now, arms folded, with a huge grin, saying, ‘Isn’t this some sh*t? He’s still winning.”

If you’re a fan of Kobe Bryant, it might get dusty or the pollen count could be high wherever you’re listening to this speech. The induction ceremony took place at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut. It was originally set to go down in 2020 but was postponed due to the pandemic. Some of the other familiar names inducted into the NBA Hall of Fame Class of 2020 includes Kevin Garnett, Tim Duncan, Coach Rudy Tomjanovich and Tamika Catchings.

Watch Vanessa Bryant’s full speech below. Rest in power Kobe Bean Bryant and Gigi Bryant.