Kobe Bryant’s death hit Walt Frazier ‘like a hammer’
Knicks legend Walt Frazier entered the Garden on Sunday in a powder-blue suit and in a daze, knowing the night’s Nets-Knicks broadcast wouldnt be an easy one.
Hours after learning Kobe Bryant was killed in a helicopter crash, Frazier, a longtime MSG Network analyst, was still trying to digest it.
“The first thing I thought of when I heard of it was Magic [Johnson] with the HIV,” Frazier told The Post while preparing for the broadcast. “This hit me like a hammer the same way. Last night — it’s ironic — we’re all watching Kobe tweet congratulations after LeBron [James] breaks his record in his hometown [passing him for third on the all-time scoring list]. I just have this meandering feeling. I was watching NBA TV and they were showing his highlights. I had to turn it off. Too depressing.
“For me I see my own mortality. You start thinking: You never know? You live life differently and don’t let little things stress you out. Live your life.”
As a Knick, Frazier was in a helicopter on a few occasions being shuttled to personal appearances.
“You’re enthralled and scared to death at the same time,’’ Frazier said. “You’re looking at the propeller like — are you kidding — knowing if you go down there’s nothing there.”
Frazier said he believed several guys would struggle to focus during Sunday night’s game.
“These players know him as the icon more than Michael [Jordan],’’ Frazier said. “I remember a few years ago I was picking up tickets before a Lakers’ game and in the Garden lobby, I thought I was in LA. It was all fans with Kobe jerseys.”
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