On Friday night at the first Los Angeles Lakers game since Kobe Bryant’s death, Wiz Khalifa and Charlie Puth paid an emotional tribute to the basketball icon.
Bryant, 41, along with his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven other people, were killed in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California on Sunday.
Khalifa and Puth teamed up to sing “See You Again,” which written originally in 2015 after the death of “Fast and Furious” star Paul Walker in 2013.
The song, which is already emotional, continued to be just that in the halftime tribute to Bryant.
Khalifa wore a “three-peat” jacket featuring the Los Angeles Lakers logo and sunglasses while Puth sported a suit and sat at the piano for the duration of the performance.
“It’s been a long day without you, my friend,” Puth sang playing the piano. “And I’ll tell you all about it when I see you again. We’ve come a long way from where we began. Oh I’ll tell you all about it when I see you again. When I see you again.”
“Who knew all the planes we flew. Good things we’ve been through. That I’ll be standing right here. Talking to you about another path. I know we loved to hit the road and laugh. But something told me that it wouldn’t last. Had to switch up look at things different see the bigger picture. Those were the days hard work forever pays now I see you in a better place.”
USA TODAY reporter Brent Schrotenboer described the atmosphere at the game, before, during and after as “heartsick.” It “seemed to keep getting bigger and sadder and more surreal,” he wrote Friday.
Khalifa and Puth’s tribute was far from the only one. They joined a list of performers and speakers that took part in Friday night’s game in addition to those that paid their own tributes outside of the Staples Center with gifts, art and more. Among those that paid tribute at the game was Bryant’s close friend and former Olympic teammate, LeBron James.
Before the crowd erupted with applause and the Lakers and the Portland Trail Blazers returned to the court, Khalifa shared a wish for peace and blessings for the Bryant family, wrapping up the song. “We love you Kobe,” Khalifa finished.