Spencer Dinwiddie Changes Number In Honor Of Kobe Bryant

Wore No. 8 For Majority Of NBA Career

Alec Gearty
January 28, 2020 - 4:11 pm

Spencer Dinwiddie took the first step to honor the late Kobe Bryant. 

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Dinwiddie has decided to change his uniform number to pay homage to Bryant, who was among the nine victims of a helicopter crash in California on Sunday. The 26-year-old wore No. 8 for the first six years of his NBA career but will wear No. 26 following the death of Bryant and his daughter Gianna. 

Bryant wore No. 8 with the Lakers from 1997-1996. He detailed the choice not to wear Kobe's number, telling Nets Daily's Anthony Puccio it was an "obvious choice" to turn to No. 26. 

"It’s an obvious choice, I kept coming to that number, but here’s why...," Dinwiddie said. "They passed on the 26th. 24 and 2 are their numbers; 2 plus 6 is 8. I’m 26 currently."

"When I decided on 8, (I was) the 8th pick in the second round," Dinwiddie added. "It’s my grandma and little brothers birthday. I signed with Brooklyn on December 8th ... And finally, because of Kobe."

According to The Athletic's Shams Charania, many players including Dinwiddie have begun informally retiring Bryant's iconic numbers. 

The Los Angeles native became emotional when he spoke about Bryant Sunday afternoon. In honor of his new number, Dinwiddie pledged to personally pay for 260 fans, who want to exchange their Dinwiddie jersey for an updated version. 

Dinwiddie received permission from the NBA to make the midseason number change rather than waiting until next season, according to The New York Times' Marc Stein. Atlanta Hawks star Trae Young wore No. 8 in his first game since the tragedy. Stein's source says NBA players hoping to switch their numbers will have their case reviewed on a "case-by-case basis."

Related: Kevin Durant On Kobe Bryant's Death: 'It's Hard To Comprehend All Of This'