Steph Curry calls Nipsey Hussle's death 'tragic'

Says the rapper 'was just getting started'

By CNN'S ELIOTT C. MCLAUGHLIN CONTRIBUTED TO THIS REPORT.
Randy Shropshire/Getty Images for Warner Music

Nipsey Hussle and Lauren London

(CNN) - Steph Curry reacted to Nipsey Hussle's sudden and untimely death in an interview with CNN's "World Sport" on Thursday, ruminating on the rapper's legacy, "his message of integrity" and the impact he had on his community.

"For him to have his life cut short like that, it's definitely sad and tragic," the NBA star said.

The Grammy-nominated artist was gunned down near his clothing store in Los Angeles on Sunday. The suspect in his shooting pleaded not guilty Thursday to one charge of murder and two counts of attempted murder, the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office said.

Curry interviewed Nipsey on his YouTube channel last summer. The two discussed fame, fatherhood and being role models for young entrepreneurs in their communities.

"I just got to meet him and talk to him and connect with him over a year ago," Curry told CNN, "and knew he was just getting started in terms of the platform he had to really change lives and do a tremendous good for the community where he grew up."

While Nipsey was a member of an arm of the Crips street gang, he also bucked the conventional trappings of gang life, speaking out against rappers who would boast about their supposed gang affiliations -- reminding them that for many young people who join gangs, that choice was about survival.

"I know there's a lot of people who have highlighted how he impacted them individually, so that his message lives on," Curry said. "And as he would say, 'The marathon continues.'"

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