It feels like it was 20 years ago now, but it was just this year that NBA icon Kobe Bryant passed away in a tragic helicopter accident, which also killed his daughter Gianna and seven others, including the pilot. Kobe received a touching tribute at the 2020 BET Awards, courtesy of Lil Wayne, who was Kobe’s friend and previously dedicated a song to him on one of his many, many mixtapes, Tear Drop Tune 2. Lil Wayne performed the song with a whole new verse shouting out Bryant’s surviving wife, Vanessa Bryant.
A short montage of highlight clips from Kobe’s career opens the performance, which finds Wayne performing in front of lights that resemble the lights of a shot clock arranged to display 24, the number that Kobe last wore for the Los Angeles Lakers and which was retired along with his previous number eight in Staples Center, where he played his entire career as a member of the Lakers. The lights also flash Kobe’s name and “Mamba,” the nickname he gave himself to represent his cold-blooded nature at the end of games.
Wayne also honored Kobe with a moment of silence on his recently-released, No. 1 album, Funeral.
Watch Lil Wayne’s “Kobe Bryant” performance above.