The Los Angeles Lakers superstar took to Instagram on Monday night to share a tribute to his friend and fellow NBA icon with a lengthy message and slideshow of snapshots showing them smiling and laughing together.
"I’m Not Ready but here I go. Man [I'm] sitting here trying to write something for this post but every time I try I begin crying again just thinking about you, niece Gigi and the friendship/bond/brotherhood we had!" James wrote. "I literally just heard your voice Sunday morning before I left Philly to head back to LA. Didn’t think for one bit in a million years that would be the last conversation we’d have. WTF!!"
"I’m heartbroken and devastated my brother!!" he continued. " Man I love you big bro. My heart goes to Vanessa and the kids. I promise you I’ll continue your legacy man! You mean so much to us all here especially #LakerNation?? and it’s my responsibility to put this s**t on my back and keep it going!!"
James concluded his emotional post, explaining that there is "so much more I want to say but just can’t right now because I can’t get through it! Until we meet again my brother!! #Mamba4Life❤️?? #Gigi4Life❤️??"
The night prior to Bryant's death, James was praised by the NBA legend for surpassing him on the NBA's all-time scoring list during his game against the Philadelphia 76ers.
James' touching post is the latest in a wave of heartfelt condolences and tributes that have been posted to social media following the tragedy. See the video below for more on Bryant's celebrated life and legacy.