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In January 2020, the five-time NBA champion and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna were among nine people to have tragically passed away following a helicopter crash in California.
The Los Angeles Lakers legend's incredible career is to be commemorated this Saturday as Jordan, one of two people Bryan selected, inducts him into the NBA Hall of Fame.
It's set to be an emotional affair, with Jordan and Bryant forming a close friendship despite being on opposite sides of the court.
Just 49 days before the accident that claimed Bryant's life at 41, the pair were chatting over text and Chicago Bulls icon Jordan cannot delete the messages - which were about tequila, family and basketball.
"This tequila is awesome," Bryant texted first regarding Jordan's Cincoro Tequila, Jordan said, as per ESPN.
"Thank you, my brother," Jordan replied.
"Yes, sir. Family good?" Bryant asked.
"All good. Yours?"
Turning the conversation to Bryant's exploits coaching his daughter Gigi, Jordan wrote: "Happy holidays, and hope to catch up soon. Coach Kobe??!"
"Ah, back at you, man," Bryant messaged back. "Hey, coach, I'm sitting on the bench right now, and we're blowing this team out. 45-8."
Commenting on the messages, Jordan said: "I just love that text because it shows Kobe's competitive nature. I don't know why, but I just can't delete it."
Jordan spoke about "little brother" Bryant at a special ceremony at the Staples Center last year and was overcome with emotion on stage.
"When Kobe Bryant died, a piece of me died," Jordan said as he wept during the event.
"Those are the memories we have to live with and we learn from. I promise you from this day forward I will live with the memories of knowing that I tried to help my little brother in every way I could."
As he prepares to induct 'Mamba' posthumously, Jordan feels he will be able to get through it.
"I was thinking, at first, I might be a little somewhat nervous about it, but then I realized I'm not going to be nervous about showing emotions for someone I absolutely loved," Jordan told ESPN.
"That's the humanistic side of me -- people tend to forget I do have one."
Bryant spent his entire 20-year career at LA Lakers, making a total of 18 All-Star sides. Both of his shirt numbers - No.8 and No.24 - were retired by the Lakers.
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