Watch Flea Play “The Star Spangled Banner” At Kobe Bryant’s Final Game

Today, NBA superstar Kobe Bryant plays his final ever game with the Los Angeles Lakers, against the Utah Jazz at the Staples Centre in LA. As is tradition at many sporting events, anthems are played ahead of the game kicking off. Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist and long time lakers fan Flea received the honour of playing the Star Spangled Banner for the momentous occasion, performing a unique and incredibly impressive version on his bass. Although Flea seems like an odd choice for Kobe’s final game – especially considering that basketball is more of a hip-hop sport, and we’ve already had Kendrick Lamar recite a poetic farewell, this is not the first time he’s performed at a game – he previously had the honour at a game back in 2014.

“I look at him as someone like, you know, Charlie Parker or John Coltrane or Jimmy Page or Jimi Hendrix, you know?” he expressed to Rolling Stone. “He’s been able to change and evolve and grow and be such a master of his craft. It’s been great seeing him grow up, because he joined the Lakers when he was 17, and he’s done so much for our city.”

Kobe Bryant, we salute you.

For more, read our feature article on the lengthy relationship between basketball and hip-hop.

Image: AP