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LeBron James has broken his silence on Kobe Bryant’s death with a touching Instagram tribute in which James promises to continue the former Los Angeles Lakers legend’s legacy.

“I’m not ready but here we go,” James began. “Man [I’m] sitting here trying to write something for this post but every time I begin crying again just thinking about you, niece Gigi and the friendship/bond/brotherhood we had!”

“My heart goes out to Vanessa and the kids," he continued. "I promise you I’ll continue your legacy man! You mean so much to us all here especially #LakerNation and it’s my responsibility to put this [expletive] on my back and keep it going! I got US here!”

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In his post, James mentioned speaking to Bryant on Sunday morning before the Lakers left Philadelphia, where they played the 76ers.

Bryant was at the Wells Fargo Center Saturday night to watch James pass him for the No. 3 spot on the all-time scoring list with 33,644 points.

In his last social media posts, Bryant congratulated James for reaching the milestone.

James and Bryant played together on Team USA but had competed against each other for years in the NBA.

The Lakers’ Tuesday game against the Clippers was postponed due to Bryant’s death.

Bryant, his daughter Gianna, and seven others were killed Monday morning in a helicopter crash amid foggy conditions in Calabasas, Calif.


Amanda Kaufman can be reached at amanda.kaufman@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @amandakauf1.