Filmmaker Kobe Bryant, victor of the Best Animated Short Film award for 'Dear Basketball, ' poses in the press room during the 90th Annual Academy Awards at Hollywood & Highland Center on March 4, 2018 in Hollywood, California.
Bryant was notoriously accused of sexual assault by a 19-year-old woman in 2003, but the case was eventually dismissed from court when the accuser refused to testify at trial.
"The Oscars nearly avoided nominating sexual predators for awards", the petition reads.
Many pointed out that the Bryant's triumph seemed to be ironic with the 90th Academy Awards' anti-harassment theme, since the sporting champion was once charged with sexual assault and harassment.
James joined Magic Johnson, Shaquille O'Neal and other current and former National Basketball Association players to congratulate Bryant after the Los Angeles Lakers superstar won an Academy Award in the animated short film category.More news: I, Tonya is an exhilarating and gripping biopic
More news: Kate Middleton Due On St. George's Day? Fans Betting On Delivery Date
More news: Guatemala, in nod to Trump, will move embassy in Israel to Jerusalem
See some of the reaction to Bryant's Oscar win below.
"I don't know if it's possible, as basketball players we're really supposed to shut up and dribble", Bryant said. "I'm glad we do a little but more than that". Thank you, Academy, for this wonderful honor. "Without you we wouldn't be here and to my wife Vanessa and to our daughters Natalia, Gianna and Bianka ... you are my inspiration". "While accepting his award, Bryant took a moment to take a shot at FOX News" Laura Ingraham's comments that players like LeBron James should just "shut up and dribble".
A petition was recently started, urging the Academy to revoke Bryant's nomination - though the more than 16,000 signatures were clearly not enough to reverse the decision or deter voters. James wrote on Twitter.
The same accuser later filed a separate civil lawsuit against Bryant, and the two parties then settled the suit privately.