METAIRIE, LA — New Orleans Pelicans center Jahlil Okafor is giving up the number 8 on his jersey to honor the legacy of Kobe Bryant. Okafor has worn the number for multiple seasons that he’s played in the NBA.
According to a written statement from the Pelicans announcing Okafor’s decision, at least two other NBA players have made the same decision to give up their number 8s, Brooklyn guard Spencer Dinwiddie and Orlando’s Terrence Ross.
While Dinwiddie and Ross have selected new numbers, Okafor says he’ll speak with is family and teammates before deciding what number to choose for the remainder of the season.
Okafor played college basketball at Duke where he wore number 15. But that number has been unavailable on the teams where he’s played in the NBA. He also wore number 4 while at the Nets.
Bryant also wore a number 24 jersey during his playing time with the Los Angeles Lakers. The owner of the Dallas Mavericks, Mark Cuban, announced that his team will retire that number to honor the NBA legend who was killed on Sunday in a helicopter crash along with his oldest daughter and seven other people.