The actress and entrepreneur opened up to ET about her special bond with Vanessa Bryant, and playing “auntie” to her children.
“I’ve seen them grow their entire lives,” Anthony tells ET’s Melicia Johnson of technically being a part of the Bryant girls’ lives “before they were even thought of,” since she and Bryant met before they became parents.
The duo started out as NBA wives supporting their husbands, Kobe Bryant and Carmelo Anthony, but their friendship goes far beyond the basketball court. Especially after the tragic deaths of Kobe and 13-year-old daughter Gianna, Anthony has continued to be a support system for Bryant and her surviving daughters.
“I’ve been a part of their lives from before they were even thought of so just to continue to be a part of their journey is amazing, and to be ‘Auntie La La,’ and to always be there for them no matter what is an amazing thing and responsibility that I don't take lightly,” she says. “That’s my family and that's what it's always gonna be. I'm always [going to have] their best interests at heart no matter what.”
Beyond their friendship, Anthony also loves the fact that her 13-year-old son, Kiyan, is growing up with both Bryant's kids as well as those of their other bestie, Ciara. “To me, it's one of the most important parts. They [the kids] look at themselves as cousins and they do a lot together,” she shares.
“It’s really cool just to see our kids grow up together and be able to have so many great experiences together,” Anthony points out. “You want that as friends.”
With a close circle that includes Kelly Rowland, and Kim Kardashian West, having a solid group of female friends has been a joy for the 39-year-old native New Yorker.
“I love my friends and I love having such a supportive group of girlfriends that I can go to for anything that are all successful in multiple areas of their life," she says. "It’s really cool to have them as a sounding board.”