When Kobe Bryant tragically passed away on January 26 of this year, the entire global community mourned. That was the impact the 5-time NBA Champion, father, husband and basketball activist had. Immediately after the incident, Nike pulled all related product from market.
Now, with Mamba Day (8/24) looming, Nike has announced "Mamba Week," a week-long celebration of the life and legacy of the late Lakers guard. A three-part initiative will take place.
The first piece is a $1 million donation from the Swoosh to the Mamba and Mambacita Sports Foundation in memory of Kobe and his daughter Gianna. The foundation helps kids stay active through sports in order to help themselves out of under served communities and financial difficulties.
Next, Nike celebrates Bean's Mamba Mentality and his desire to continually get better and compete at the highest level. This will be done through Kobe's Mamba League, which he established in LA in 2017 alongside Nike and the Boys & Girls Club. The league helps provide a place for kids to learn the game of basketball and working hard on and off the court.
Finally, Nike is releasing limited edition sneakers and a jersey to honor the legend and his contributions to this aspect of the game. A limited edition Lakers jersey in black and gold will be released on August 24 for $120 via SNKRS app and have both "8" on the front and "24" on the back.
Five Nike Kobe V Protro sneakers will celebrate the superstar. The "Big Stage" version will release first on August 23 for $180 via SNKRS and commemorates the 10th anniversary of Kobe's fifth ring. Black, white and gold filled the upper with achievements from that season in tattoo formatting. The "5x Champ" version of the sneaker will release on Mamba Day along with the jersey. It draws championship Lakers colors from the Jeff Hamilton jacket that Kobe famously wore after their 2001 championship.
Next up, UNDEFEATED continues to pour out support and collaborations celebrating its city's hero. The LA-based boutique offers up a "What If" pack debating the age old sports fan question. A Charlotte Hornets colorway pays homage to the team that drafted the kid out of Lower Merion High School in 1996 and the other is a combination of the colors from the 12 teams that passed on Bryant. These drop on August 27 at UNDFTD.
And lastly, that killer instinct that Kobe's eyes always telegraphed was the end for an opponent are captured in the "Girls EYBL" colorway. Inspired by Medusa who had a stare that turned mortals into stone, these are a must have on August 29 via SNKRS app.
8/23/20 (Sunday) - Kobe V Protro "Big Stage"
8/24/20 (Monday) - Kobe V Protro "5x Champ" and Limited Edition City Jersey
8/27/20 (Thursday) - UNDEFEATED x Kobe V Protro "What If" Pack
8/29/20 (Saturday) - Kobe V Protro "Girls EYBL"