Gio On Kobe Bryant Death: 'Guys Like That Aren't Supposed To Go Like This'

Says NBA Legend's Passing Has Hit Him Hard

Boomer and Gio
January 27, 2020 - 8:59 am

The news of Kobe Bryant's death Sunday devastated many people. WFAN's Gregg Giannotti was among those hit hard by the tragedy.

"There was something about yesterday that really hit me and the people that are in my life harder than normal," Giannotti said at the start of Monday's "Boomer and Gio" show. "And I spent a lot of time trying to figure out why exactly that was. And of course, the obvious reasons are there, about Kobe and his greatness and, of course, his daughter being on the plane, which is as heartbreaking as anything imaginable. And the fact that he was only 41 years old, and you have all these great memories of him on the court and all that, all that obvious stuff.

"But I also think a reason why it hit me as hard as it did was he seemed invincible to me. He didn't seem like he was a human being. He felt like more than that. And guys like that aren't supposed to go like this."

Giannotti said he was in such disbelief that it took him hours to accept the news of Bryant's death, as he hoped the initial TMZ report about the helicopter crash was erroneous. 

"It really sort of made me think about the mortality of not just me, but everybody around me more than any of these things (celebrity deaths) ever had," Gio said. "If Kobe Bryant's life with his daughter can be cut short in this tragic way -- I mean that rocked everybody yesterday."

Fans gather at LA Live in Los Angeles to pay tribute to Kobe Bryant, who died earlier in a helicopter crash on Jan. 26, 2020.
Harry How/Getty Images

Giannotti also said he was surprised by how many NBA players were impacted by Bryant's career.

"To see the weeping that was going on from some of these NBA players, too -- Kobe meant something to so many fans, but I think something I didn't quite realize, 'cause he was such an incredible competitor and there was a lot of guys who disliked him because of that, and he was such a tough guy to play against, I didn't realize the level of respect that the NBA community had for him. I really didn't understand."

To listen to the open from Monday's "Boomer and Gio" show, click on the audio player above.