LeBron James felt Kobe Bryant’s presence throughout his team’s win over Team Giannis in the NBA All-Star Game on Sunday.
Team LeBron edged Team Giannis 157-155 in Chicago in an entertaining clash as Bryant was honoured.
James said the presence of the Los Angeles Lakers great – who died in a helicopter crash alongside his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others last month – was felt.
“We wouldn’t be All-Stars if we weren’t competitors,” he told a news conference.
“We all compete at the highest level, try to put our respective teams in a position to win every night so guys definitely just had that sense of pride, that sense of competitiveness throughout the season, throughout the All-Star Game, which we had tonight.
“But you could definitely feel Bean’s presence just from the start, from every moment, from the fans chanting his name to seeing the numbers every time Giannis’ team run on the floor you seen the 24.
“He was definitely here.”
Kawhi Leonard claimed the NBA All-Star Game Kobe Bryant MVP Award after contributing 30 points, seven rebounds and four assists for Team LeBron.