Chiefs and 49ers players come together for Kobe Bryant tribute before Super Bowl
Rival players from the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers came together to pay tribute to NBA great Kobe Bryant ahead of their Super Bowl 54 match-up.
Bryant and daughter Gianna were amongst nine killed in a tragic helicopter crash in California last week leading to tributes from around the globe.
Tributes have been paid throughout the festivities in Super Bowl week in Miami with NFL players and fans alike amongst those inspired and touched by the "Black Mamba".
After completing their warm-ups at the Hard Knock Stadium, players from both the Chiefs and 49ers took a moment to line up opposite each other and take a moment to remember the life of Bryant.
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The same tribute was paid to NFL Hall of Famer Chris Doleman, who passed away this week after a battle with illness, aged 58.
The big screens were lit up with tributes to both Bryant and Doleman as fans joined players and staff in paying their respects ahead of the biggest sporting event on the US calendar.
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A host of players paid their own individual tributes ahead of the game, including Kobe Bryant-inspired customised cleats worn by the likes of Chiefs receiver Demarcus Robinson and 49ers receiver Emmanuel Sanders in the warm-up.
49ers defensive back Richard Sherman was also amongst those to be pictured arriving in a Kobe Bryant jersey ahead of the game, donning a 2004 All Star jersey.
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Sanders shared a photo of his cleats the day before the game alongside a Kobe Bryant quote, with the caption reading: “I’ll do whatever it takes to win. Whether it’s sitting on the bench waiving a towel. Handing out cups of water to my teammates or hitting the game winning shot.” – Mamba.
Whilst there are strict rules on the use of custom cleats in games – leading many to don customised designs in warm-ups then change – he was hopeful of being able to wear them in the Super Bowl due to the red and gold colour scheme of the 49ers.
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