ESPN to Provide Comprehensive Coverage of the Los Angeles Lakers’ Pregame Ceremony Honoring Kobe Bryant Ahead of Friday’s Game Telecast Against the Portland Trail Blazers


ESPN to Provide Comprehensive Coverage of the Los Angeles Lakers’ Pregame Ceremony Honoring Kobe Bryant Ahead of Friday’s Game Telecast Against the Portland Trail Blazers

  • Two-hour Special of The Jump from LA Live Plaza Beginning at 3 p.m. ET
  • NBA Countdown Airs from LA Live Plaza at 7 p.m. on ESPN and at 9 p.m. on ESPN2
  • Hoop Streams Live from Staples Center Ahead of Trail Blazers vs. Lakers
  • SportsCenter to Feature Content from Los Angeles

Ahead of tonight’s Trail Blazers vs. Lakers matchup on ESPN, the Los Angeles Lakers will honor five-time NBA Champion and eighteen-time NBA All Star, Kobe Bryant, after the Lakers legend’s recent tragic death. ESPN will provide comprehensive coverage of the ceremony beginning at 10 p.m.

The Los Angeles Lakers and LeBron James host the Portland Trail Blazers and Damian Lillard in the second half of ESPN’s Friday night NBA doubleheader beginning at 10:30 p.m. The broadcast team of Mike Breen, Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson will provide game commentary throughout the night with sideline reporter Lisa Salters. The doubleheader tips off at 7:30 p.m. in Houston when James Harden and the Houston Rockets host Kristaps Porzingis and the Dallas Mavericks. Dave Pasch will call the action with analyst Doris Burke and sideline reporter Jorge Sedano.

NBA Countdown will lead into the night beginning at 7 p.m. on ESPN from LA Live Plaza with host Maria Taylor, and analysts Stephen A. Smith, Michael Wilbon, Jalen Rose and Paul Pierce. The show will air live on ESPN2 beginning at 9 p.m. to reflect on the life and legacy of Kobe Bryant. 

Hoop Streams will be live from Staples Center on the ESPN App, and ESPN’s Twitter and YouTube platforms beginning at 9:30 p.m. with host Cassidy Hubbarth, NBA analyst Kendrick Perkins and social commentator Gary Striewski.

A special two-hour edition of The Jump, ESPN’s daily NBA news and discussion show led by Rachel Nichols, will air today, beginning at 3 p.m. from LA Live Plaza to commemorate Kobe Bryant’s legacy. The show will feature special guests including three-time NBA Champion and Bryant’s former teammate Brian Shaw, founding member of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Flea, sports photographer, Andrew Bernstein, reigning WNBA Rookie of the Year Naphessa Collier, and ESPN analysts Kendrick Perkins, Paul Pierce, Jalen Rose, Matt Barnes, Ramona Shelburne, and David Fizdale.

SportsCenter will feature content from LA Live Plaza with Stephen A. Smith, Michael Wilbon, Jalen Rose, Paul Pierce and Maria Taylor from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC presented by Under Armour
The Philadelphia 76ers and three-time NBA All Star Joel Embiid travel to Boston to face the Celtics and four-time NBA All Star Kemba Walker in ESPN’s NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC.  The Eastern Conference matchup tips off at 8:30 p.m. with play-by-play commentator Mark Jones, analyst and Naismith Basketball Hall of Famer Hubie Brown and sideline reporter Israel Gutierrez. ESPN officiating expert, Steve Javie, will provide analysis from the NBA Replay Center in Secaucus, N.J.

The NBA Saturday Primetime pregame edition of The Jump, will lead into game coverage at 8 p.m. from Los Angeles with host Rachel Nichols, analyst and former Celtic, Paul Pierce and analyst Jalen Rose. The cast will continue to honor the late NBA legend, Kobe Bryant.

NBA Sunday Showcase on ABC
The NBA Sunday Showcase on ABC returns on Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 2, with a special 2 p.m. start time, when Zion Williamson and the New Orleans Pelicans visit James Harden and the Houston Rockets. This is the final regular-season matchup between the teams, and the first time Williamson and Harden share the court. Dave Pasch, Doris Burke and Jorge Sedano return to the sidelines to call the action with Steve Javie, will providing analysis from the NBA Replay Center. NBA Sunday Showcase will air at its normal 3:30 p.m. start time beginning Feb. 23, with NBA Countdown tipping off coverage at 3 p.m.


Shakeemah Simmons-Winter

I am a senior publicist for men’s pro sports, working predominantly with the NBA and FIBA properties. I’m a Jersey City, NJ native, so I cheer for all New York sports and athletes, win or lose. I began my sports career as a small forward for JCPS #9’s elementary basketball team, and then years later gave up my hoop dreams (sort of) to work as the Public Relations Coordinator for the New York Knicks. Prior to working in sports, I briefly worked as an intern turned production assistant for the Wendy Williams Show. I earned a B.A. in Communications from Cheyney University of Pennsylvania, where I met my husband Matthew, and later attended New York University to earn a M.S. in Public Relations and Corporate Communications. I am excited to continue my sports journey with some of the most knowledgeable professionals in the sports industry.
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