The demand for tickets to the Feb. 24 memorial service celebrating the lives of Kobe and Gianna Bryant far exceeds the number of available seats.
More than 90,000 people registered for tickets in the first 24 hours, a source with knowledge of the situation told Yahoo Sports on Saturday. Capacity at Staples Center is approximately 20,000, and many of those seats are expected to be reserved for Kobe’s friends and family, NBA luminaries and other invited guests.
In confirmation emails sent to fans who registered for tickets to the public memorial, TicketMaster cautioned that it expects demand to be “extremely high.” Once the window to register for tickets closes Monday at 10 p.m. PT, registrants will be selected at random to have the opportunity to participate in Wednesday’s public sale.
Fans who are lucky enough to be chosen can purchase a maximum of two tickets at three different price levels: Top-tier tickets are $224 each, while others can be purchased at two for $224 or $24.02 apiece. Tickets are non-transferable and non-refundable. Proceeds will go to the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation, which aims to further Kobe and Gianna’s legacy in youth sports.
The Lakers are encouraging fans without tickets to watch the memorial from home rather than coming to downtown Los Angeles and gathering outside Staples Center. The memorial service will not be shown on any video screens outside Staples Center or across the street at L.A. Live.
The public memorial will take place almost one month after the Jan. 26 helicopter crash that claimed the lives of Kobe, his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others. The nine victims were en route to the Mamba Sports Academy in Thousand Oaks, where Gianna’s basketball team was scheduled to play in a tournament later that day.
The date of the public memorial (2/24/20) and the unusual ticket pricing holds special significance for the Bryant family. Of course, No. 24 is the jersey number Kobe wore during the latter half of his Lakers career. No. 2 was Gianna’s jersey number with Team Mamba. And the No. 20 represents the number of years since Kobe and his wife Vanessa first met.
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