Kobe Bryant died on Sunday at the age of 41 in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California, that also claimed the lives of his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others.

And as news of his death sends shockwaves around the world, Australian NBA stars have shared their tributes to the late LA Lakers legend on social media.

Melbourne-born Ryan Broekhoff, 29, who is signed to the Dallas Mavericks, tweeted: ‘My deepest condolences to the Bryant family. Such a tragedy. One of the greatest to ever play the game and an idol to many.’

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Tragedy: NBA legend Kobe Bryant died on Sunday at the age of 41 in a helicopter crash in Calabasas that also claimed the lives of his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others

Tragedy: NBA legend Kobe Bryant died on Sunday at the age of 41 in a helicopter crash in Calabasas that also claimed the lives of his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others 

Tributes: As news of Kobe's death sends shockwaves around the world, Australian NBA players including Melbourne-born Ryan Broekhoff have shared their tributes to the late LA Lakers star

Tributes: As news of Kobe’s death sends shockwaves around the world, Australian NBA players including Melbourne-born Ryan Broekhoff have shared their tributes to the late LA Lakers star

Kobe and Gianna Bryant were killed when the athlete’s private Sikorsky S-76 struck a hillside amid heavy fog and caught fire at about 10am on Sunday. 

The cause of the crash is under investigation. Witnesses reported hearing the helicopter’s engine sputtering before it went down near the home of Kourtney Kardashian.

Mitch Creek, who hails from Horsham, Victoria, and made his NBA debut for the Brooklyn Nets earlier this month, wrote: ‘RIP to one of the greatest. Literally heartbreaking!’

Sydney-born Lakeland Magic star Isaac Humphries added: ‘Wow… A true legend that inspired us all everyday…Rest in peace Kobe.’ 

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Jonah Bolden, a Melburnian signed to the Philadelphia 76ers, also shared a photo of Kobe, alongside the caption: ‘Rest in paradise.’ 

Detroit Pistons player Thon Maker, who was born in South Sudan and migrated to Australia as a child, expressed disbelief over the news, writing: ‘Can’t be!!’  

Gone too soon: Former basketballer Shane Heal, who had two stints in the NBA between 1996 and 2004, tweeted a picture of Kobe and his daughter alongside the caption, 'Shattered'

Gone too soon: Former basketballer Shane Heal, who had two stints in the NBA between 1996 and 2004, tweeted a picture of Kobe and his daughter alongside the caption, ‘Shattered’

Tragedy: Mitch Creek, who hails from Horsham, Victoria, and made his NBA debut for the Brooklyn Nets earlier this month, wrote: 'RIP to one of the greatest. Literally heartbreaking!'

Tragedy: Mitch Creek, who hails from Horsham, Victoria, and made his NBA debut for the Brooklyn Nets earlier this month, wrote: ‘RIP to one of the greatest. Literally heartbreaking!’ 

'A great loss': Retired Portland Trail Blazers star Chris Anstey tweeted: 'Kobe. Such an unbelievably sad day and great loss for the basketball world'

‘A great loss’: Retired Portland Trail Blazers star Chris Anstey tweeted: ‘Kobe. Such an unbelievably sad day and great loss for the basketball world’ 

Former basketballer Shane Heal, who had two stints in the NBA between 1996 and 2004, captioned a picture of Kobe and his daughter: ‘Shattered’.

Retired Portland Trail Blazers star Chris Anstey tweeted: ‘Kobe. Such an unbelievably sad day and great loss for the basketball world.’ 

Andrew Gaze, who played in the NBA between 1993 and 1999, added: ‘Devastated. #24 #8.’

No words: Andrew Gaze, who played in the NBA between 1993 and 1999, tweeted: 'Devastated'

No words: Andrew Gaze, who played in the NBA between 1993 and 1999, tweeted: ‘Devastated’

'Rest in peace': Sydney-born Lakeland Magic star Isaac Humphries added: 'Wow... A true legend that inspired us all everyday... Rest in peace Kobe'

‘Rest in peace’: Sydney-born Lakeland Magic star Isaac Humphries added: ‘Wow… A true legend that inspired us all everyday… Rest in peace Kobe’

Legend of the game: Kobe spent his 20-year career with the LA Lakers, winning five NBA championships and 18 All-Star titles before retiring in 2016. He is pictured on the court in 2013

Legend of the game: Kobe spent his 20-year career with the LA Lakers, winning five NBA championships and 18 All-Star titles before retiring in 2016. He is pictured on the court in 2013

Meanwhile, dozens of other prominent Australians shared their condolences to the Bryant family.

Celebrity agent Max Markson wrote on Instagram: ‘RIP @kobebryant who I was privileged to do publicity for when he came to Melbourne in March 2019.’

Victoria’s Secret model Shanina Shaik also shared a photo of Kobe in his basketball jersey with the caption: ‘Legends live forever.’ 

Devastating: Kobe and Gianna are survived by his wife Vanessa (pictured together on December 14, 2019) and their three other daughters, Natalia, Bianca and newborn Capri

Devastating: Kobe and Gianna are survived by his wife Vanessa (pictured together on December 14, 2019) and their three other daughters, Natalia, Bianca and newborn Capri



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