"With the untimely and unexpected passing of the great Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna, please sign this petition in an attempt to immortalize her forever in the rafters alongside her father at Staples," Mukhey wrote.
At just 13-years-old, Gianna was a budding AAU sensation and wore the no. 2. Her father served as one of her team's AAU coaches and sponsors. Gigi mirrored a lot of her father's moves on the court and was given the nickname "Mambacita" after her father's "Black Mamba" moniker.
I was blessed with the opportunity to film Kobe Bryant’s daughter, Gianna Bryant. This footage was taken back in May 2019. Kobe was a legend, and Gianna was on her way to being a legend. May both Rest In Paradise 🙏🏽 pic.twitter.com/lK1RcomZL1— EVision (@EVisionAZ) January 27, 2020
Bryant had aspirations of playing for Geno Auriemma at the University of Connecticut. After her death, the UConn women's basketball team paid tribute to Gigi by reserving a spot on the bench for her with a no. 2 jersey and flowers.
Staples Center is considered "The House That Kobe Built." Bryant was fortunate enough to see both his no. 8 and no. 24 jerseys lifted into the rafters while he was still alive. Kobe is the only player in NBA history to have two different jersey numbers retired by the same team.
The Nets have honored Gigi and Kobe by keeping two courtside seats empty in their honor. Bryant and his daughter sat in those seats during a now-viral video of Kobe coaching Gigi through plays they were seeing the NBA teams run.
So far, the petition to have Gianna's number displayed at the Staples Center has nearly reached its goal of 150,000 signatures.