LeBron James says he's a 'wreck,' declines to confirm if he attended Kobe Bryant memorial

Monday’s memorial for Kobe and Gianna Bryant drew a who’s who of NBA stars to Staples Center, including Michael Jordan, Shaquille O’Neal, Bill Russell and Dwyane Wade.

Among active players in attendance were Russell Westbrook, James Harden, Stephen Curry and most of the Los Angeles Lakers, according to the L.A. Times.

Notably absent from the view of TV cameras was LeBron James, leaving fans to wonder if the Lakers superstar was in attendance. If he was, he remained out of the public eye.

He was asked about it at Lakers shootaround on Tuesday. He declined to provide clarity.

“I respect your question, for sure,” James said when asked if he attended, per the Times. “It was very emotional, very emotional day, very tough day for myself, for my family, for everyone involved.”

‘I’d appreciate if we can move on’

James then praised Kobe’s widow, Vanessa Bryant, for her strength before asking to move on from the topic.

“The one thing I can come out of this saying is how strong and how bold and how powerful Vanessa is to stand up there the way she did, to give the speech the way she gave that speech,” James continued. “I commend her. My heart is with her family still, with his three daughters that’s still here, with his wife, with his mom and dad, his sister.

“It was just a very difficult day. Obviously celebration, but it was a difficult day for all of us. I’d appreciate it if we can move on tonight. That would be great.”

James says he’s ‘emotionally a wreck’

James did talk about the impact Bryant’s death in a helicopter crash on Jan. 26 has had on him.

“Emotionally a wreck, like everyone else,” James said. “Another challenging day for all of us. Like you’ve been hearing me talk about the last couple times you guys asked me about the whole situation, it’s just been hard to kind of talk about it. Trying not to go back. It’s just tough.”

He’s alluded to that emotional toll before, including after Sunday’s win over the Boston Celtics, where he told reporters that he’s trying to move on from focusing on Bryant’s death.

“It’s been a celebration ever since we got the horrific news about his life and what he means to the game,” James said on Sunday. “But I don’t want to keep going back on it. I think it’s unfair and unjust to his family as they’re trying to move on and we’re all trying to move on, but also know that he’s with us.

“His jersey is sitting in my locker right now. But it just puts me in a difficult mind state if I continue to harp on it, if you can respect that.”

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LeBron James and Kobe Bryant together
TORONTO, ON - FEBRUARY 14: Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers and the Western Conference and LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Eastern Conference laugh after a play in the first half during the NBA All-Star Game 2016 at the Air Canada Centre on February 14, 2016 in Toronto, Ontario. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - FEBRUARY 10, 2016: Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers drives to the basket against LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers in the second half of a game on February 10, 2016 at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. Cleveland won 120-111. (Photo by: 2016 Nick Cammett/Diamond Images via Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - FEBRUARY 10: LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers greets Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers prior to the game at Quicken Loans Arena on February 10, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory copyright notice. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS, LA - FEBRUARY 16: LeBron James #6 of the Eastern Conference All-Stars and Kobe Bryant #24 of the Western Conference All-Stars greet after the 2014 NBA All-Star Game as part of the 2014 All-Star Weekend at Smoothie King Center on February 16, 2014 in New Orleans, Louisiana. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2014 NBAE (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
(From L) US gold medalists Kevin Durant, James Harden, LeBron James and Kobe Bryant pose on the podium after winning the London 2012 Olympic Games men's gold medal basketball game between USA and Spain at the North Greenwich Arena in London on August 12, 2012. AFP PHOTO / MARTIN BUREAU (Photo credit should read MARTIN BUREAU/AFP/GettyImages)
US forward LeBron James (L) chat with US guard Kobe Bryant (R) during the men's preliminary round basketball match USA vs Nigeria of the London 2012 Olympic Games on August 2, 2012 at the basketball arena in London. AFP PHOTO / MARK RALSTON (Photo credit should read MARK RALSTON/AFP/GettyImages)
ORLANDO, FL - FEBRUARY 26: (L-R) LeBron James #6 of the Miami Heat and the Eastern Conference talks with Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers and the Western Conference during the 2012 NBA All-Star Game at the Amway Center on February 26, 2012 in Orlando, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL - JANUARY 19: LeBron James #6 of the Miami Heat is guarded by Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers during a game at American Airlines Arena on January 19, 2012 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Kobe Bryant, left, is grabbed by LeBron James as he controls the ball late in the second half of the NBA All Star Game at Staples Center. (Photo by Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
Lakers Kobe Bryant argues with a referee as Cavaliers LeBron James laughs at the Staples Center Friday. (Photo by Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
PHOENIX - FEBRUARY 14: (L-R) Savannah Brinson, Lebron James, Kobe Bryant and Vanessa Bryant attend Sprite's 3rd Annual Jay-Z And Lebron James "Two Kings" Dinner & After Party (Photo by Johnny Nunez/WireImage)
USA's Kobe Bryant (L) looks at USA's LeBron James during the men's semi-final basketball match Argentina against The US of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games on August 22, 2008 at the Olympic basketball Arena in Beijing. AFP PHOTO / FILIPPO MONTEFORTE (Photo credit should read FILIPPO MONTEFORTE/AFP via Getty Images)
(Beijing, China Wednesday, August 20, 2008) Kobe Bryant, left and teammate LeBron James share a laugh from the bench as the last minutes tick away in a 11685 USA win over Australia in the Men's Olympic Basketball Quarterfinals in Beijing. (Photo by Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - NOVEMBER 17: Kobe Bryant embraces LeBron James during a basketball game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Atlanta Hawks at Staples Center on November 17, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Allen Berezovsky/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - DECEMBER 29: LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers has a moment on the sideline with former Laker Kobe Bryant in the second half during a game against the Dallas Mavericks at Staples Center on December 29, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images)
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