PHOENIX Suns guard Chris Paul was named the first recipient of the Kobe & Gigi Bryant WNBA Advocacy Award for his contributions to the advancement of girls’ and women’s basketball, the league said on Sunday.

The Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) and Vanessa Bryant will present Paul with the award later on Sunday during the National Basketball Association’s All-Star Game in Cleveland.

“I have seen first-hand Chris’ appreciation of the WNBA and the game at every level for women and girls, especially in Phoenix and North Carolina, and his ardent support of our game strongly reflects the legacy of Kobe and Gigi,” WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert said in a news release.

Bryant, five-time NBA champion during his 20 seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers, died in 2020 at the age of 41 in a helicopter crash, along with his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and all seven others on board. — Reuters