The tragic passing of NBA legend Kobe Bryant shocked and shook the sports world, and it’ll have an effect on the UFC 247 main event as well. During a media luncheon ahead of his fight for the UFC light heavyweight title against Jon Jones, challenger Dominick Reyes hopes to honor Kobe Bryant.
Speaking to the media on Thursday, Reyes said he would like to honor Bryant, who he said is the only athlete he’s ever looked up to.
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) January 30, 2020
“I’ve never looked up to any other athlete but Kobe Bryant. Kobe’s mentality of no one is going to believe in you but you, I use that throughout my life. I made it to my university, I’m here [at UFC 247] on that philosophy. Nobody is going to believe in you but you, nobody is going to work for you, work when the lights are off, work when nobody’s looking, that’s what matters, that’s what makes a champion, winning is everything.”
When asked if he had any special plans to honor Bryant for next week’s UFC 247, Reyes said he wish he could honor him throughout the week.
“I mean, I’d like to wear his jersey throughout the week but I don’t know if Reebok would be very excited about that. We’ll see. Definitely, win this belt, he’s definitely in my heart, definitely in my mind. ”
Reyes will face Jon Jones for the UFC’s light heavyweight title and the opportunity to dethrone the reigning champion and be the next champion not named Jones or Daniel Cormier. “The Devastator” is 12-0 in his professional career and is 6-0 since joining the UFC, with four finishes including a first-round knockout win over Chris Weidman in his last fight.
Although Reebok is the official outfitter of the UFC, it’ll be interesting to see if they and the UFC will allow Dominick Reyes to honor Kobe Bryant, who was an investor of BODYARMOR Sports Drink, who also had a deal with the UFC.
Would you like to see Dominick Reyes honor Kobe Bryant ahead of UFC 247?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 1/30/2020