Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett and six others will forever be basketball legends as it was announced they would be enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts.

The Hall of Fame’s announcement was delayed from the NCAA’s Final Four weekend in Atlanta after the tournament was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, and it comes a little over two months after Bryant died in a helicopter crash.

“We wish that he was here with us to celebrate but it’s definitely the peak of his NBA career and every accomplishment that he had as an athlete was a stepping stone to be here. So we’re incredibly proud of him, and there’s some solace in knowing that he was probably going to be part of the 2020 Hall of Fame class,” Bryant’s wife, Vanessa, said in an interview with ESPN, as she began to choke up.

John Doleva, the president and CEO of the Hall of Fame, said this class was “undoubtedly one of the most historic of all time,” especially during a period of tragedy and hardship for basketball.

Bryant, Duncan and Garnett combined for 48 NBA All-Star game appearances, the most of any trio who retired in the same season. They are inducted alongside basketball coaches Eddie Sutton, Rudy Tomjanovich, Kim Mulkey, and Barbara Stevens as well as WNBA All-Star Tamika Catchings and French basketball executive Patrick Baumann.
– NBC News