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The Lakers Best Kept Secret, How Far the FO Went to Hide Kobe Statue's pose

By James Brown

The Lakers Best Kept Secret, How Far the FO Went to Hide Kobe Statue's pose

The Lakers kept the pose of Kobe Bryant a top secret that the front office went far to hide it from the public and others

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Kobe Bryant has been so iconic for the LA Lakers and the NBA world that he is not only getting one statue but in fact, he will be getting three. The first one that got unveiled this Thursday, has the purple and gold legend wearing the No. 8 with the pose he did after his 81-point game against the Raptors in 2006.

"For the record, Kobe picked the pose you're about to see, so if anyone has any issues with it, tough s---," Bryant's widow, Vanessa, said from a stage at the tented ceremony set up on Star Plaza outside Arena.

The Lakers organization and Bryant family kept so secretive the pose of the first statue, that even the photographer that took the picture with the pose didn't know about it. The statue is modeled after a photograph taken by longtime NBA photographer Noah Graham, who was a guest but was just as surprised as everyone else when the gold curtain was dropped.

"When that confetti blew off, that's when I knew," Graham spoke to ESPN. "I had no idea. In the world of Kobe moments, this makes sense to me. But I'm partial. I was there. This is through my eye. Of course, I'm going to vote for something I did."

The star-studded cast of celebrities and NBA legends that attended the ceremony

The invite-only crowd included Bryant's daughters and sister; Laker greats Magic Johnson, Jerry West, Michael Cooper, Jamaal Wilkes, Mychal Thompson and Pau Gasol; former Bryant teammates Metta World Peace, Caron Butler, Lamar Odom, Sasha Vujacic, Matt Barnes, Mark Madsen, Gary Payton, Larry Nance, Josh Powell, Kareem Rush, Devean George, A.C. Green, Vladimir Radmanovic, DJ Mbenga and Trevor Ariza; former coaches Del Harris, Jim Cleamons, Kurt Rambis, Byron Scott and Larry Drew; and other friends of Bryant from the sports and pop culture community in Russell Wilson and his wife, Ciara, Bad Bunny, Dwyane Wade, Lisa Leslie, Candace Parker, Jamal Crawford and Sydney Leroux.

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