Sportress of Blogitude

LeBron James paying tribute to Kobe Bryant during NBA restart

The NBA will at long last resume its stalled season on Thursday night in Orlando, Fla., and LeBron James will pay tribute to the late Kobe Bryant during the Los Angeles Lakers’ opening tilt against the Los Angeles Clippers.

The Lakers superstar took to Instagram Thursday to share an image of himself sporting a No. 24 finger sleeve on his left hand.

“Stucc in the Grind! The Marathon Continues tonight and forever. Let’s Get It,” James wrote in a nod to late rapper Nipsey Hussle.

Bryant’s passing not surprisingly hit James especially hard, as the two developed a strong rapport once LeBron signed with the Lakers. Their friendship in recent years blossomed after the two enjoyed a competitive on-court rivalry before Kobe retired.

Earlier this month, James admitted that “not a day that doesn’t go by that I don’t think about him.”

Shortly after Bryant’s death, James debuted a new “Mamba 4 Life” tattoo in honor of the Lakers icon.

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My brother #Mamba4Life #RIPKobe #RIPGiGi

A post shared by LeBron James (@kingjames) on

It merits noting that James has been wearing the No. 24 finger sleeve since Bryant perished along with daughter Gianna and seven others in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, Calif., on Jan. 26.

Thursday’s Instagram dispatch, then, merely is James’ way of reminding his fans that Bryant remains in his heart and on his mind heading into the NBA’s long-awaited resumption in the bubble at the Walt Disney World Resort’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.