The term “girl dad” has taken over social media this week after ESPN SportsCenter anchor Elle Duncan revealed that Kobe Bryant used the phrase while describing himself when she met him for the first time.
It didn’t take long for the #girldad hashtag to take hold, and now proud fathers everywhere are showing off their daughters. That includes Seattle Seahawks star quarterback Russell Wilson.
He took to Twitter to use the hashtag and post four photos of himself with his two-year-old daughter Sienna Princess Wilson, whom he shares with Ciara.
The “girl dad” phrase came from a tribute Duncan was doing on live TV. She was talking about meeting Bryant at an ESPN in New York City. He noticed she was pregnant, and they started talking about being parents.
— Russell Wilson (@DangeRussWilson) January 29, 2020
“‘Girls are the best,'” Duncan recalled Bryant saying. “I asked him for advice on raising girls, seeing as he had three at the time. He said, ‘Just be grateful that you are being given that gift because girls are amazing.'”
She asked if he and Vanessa wanted to have more kids. “Vanessa wanted to try again for a boy, but was jokingly concerned it would be a girl.” Bryant added that “‘I would have five more girls if I could. I’m a girl dad.'”
“When it came to sports, he said that his oldest daughter was an accomplished volleyball player and that his youngest was a toddler, so TBD. But that middle one, he said ‘That middle one is a monster, she’s a beast. She is better than I was at her age, she’s got it,'” Duncan said, fighting back tears.
“That middle one, of course, was GiGi,” Duncan continued. “When I reflect on this tragedy and the half hour I spent with Kobe Bryant two years ago, I suppose that the only small source of comfort for me is knowing that he died doing what he loved most: Being a dad. Being a girl dad.”
"I would have 5 more girls if I could. I'm a girl dad."
Elle Duncan's story about how much Kobe loved his daughters is something special. pic.twitter.com/hkxcxFmyjQ
— ESPN Australia & NZ (@ESPNAusNZ) January 28, 2020
There’s been an outpouring of tributes since the news broke on Sunday, including one from Michael Jordan:
“I am in shock over the tragic news of Kobe’s and Gianna’s passing. Words can’t describe the pain I’m feeling. I loved Kobe – he was like a little brother to me. We used to talk often, and I will miss those conversations very much.
“He was a fierce competitor, one of the greats of the game and a creative force. Kobe was also an amazing dad who loved his family deeply – and took great pride in his daughter’s love for the game of basketball. Yvette joins me in sending my deepest condolences to Vanessa, the Lakers organization and basketball fans around the world.”