Novak Djokovic could not take into consideration No. 24 with out pondering of Kobe Bryant.
So after profitable the U.S. Open on Sunday evening for a historic twenty fourth Grand Slam title, Djokovic placed on a blue T-shirt that honored the Los Angeles Lakers nice.
The shirt learn “Mamba Forever” on the front, along with pictures of Bryant and Djokovic. On the back in purple was the No. 24, one of two numbers Bryant wore during his Hall of Fame career.
Djokovic said he came up with the idea about a week ago as a way to honor his friend. He said he received advice on his own career from Bryant, who died in 2020 in a helicopter crash that also killed his daughter, Gianna, and seven others.
“Kobe was a close friend, we chatted a lot about the winner’s mentality when I was struggling with injury and trying to make my comeback, work my way back to the top of the game,” Djokovic said. “He was one of the people that I relied on the most.” “He was always there for any kind of counsel, advice, any kind of support in the most friendly way,” Djokovic continued. “So in fact what occurred a number of years in the past and him and his daughter passing damage me deeply, and I assumed 24 is the jersey he wore when he turned a legend of the Lakers and world basketball, so I assumed it might be a pleasant, symbolic factor to acknowledge him for all of the issues he is accomplished.”
Bryant’s widow, Vanessa, congratulated Djokovic with an Instagram put up, saying that “Real recognize Real” with the hashtag MambaMentality.