There has not been a lot of good news for the Lakers this season, but a little breath of fresh air came on March 24th. On that day, Vanessa Bryant announced on her Instagram account that she had reached an agreement with Nike to continue making Kobe Bryant’s coveted sneakers. Kobe sneakers are considered some of the best available sneakers to hoop in for NBA and WNBA players.
Vanessa Bryant’s full announcement: pic.twitter.com/fxcYoxRMcx
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) March 24, 2022
Last year, it was a shock to the sneaker and basketball community when Nike’s relationship ended with the Bryant estate. The price for his sneakers skyrocketed. As it is, the option to buy them retail is near impossible, but now you were looking at paying double or triple the price for a pair on the secondary market.
Vanessa mentioned the relationship with Nike ended was partly due to the lack of supply. Fans of the Black Mamba wanted his sneakers, but were unable to purchase them because they were being taken by the resellers. This didn’t sit right with her.
Kobe’s shoes are arguably the most popular option for current NBA/WNBA players and fans alike. The announcement of their return was welcomed with joy and excitement. The first shoe to be released by Nike will be the Kobe 6 Protro “Mambacita Sweet 16” to honor their daughter Gigi. 100% of the proceeds of Gigi’s shoes will go to the Mamba and Mambacita Sports Foundation, along with any future Gigi products.
Here’s a quote from Nike President and CEO, John Donahoe.
“Kobe Bryant means so much to so many of us, not just NBA fans but globally beyond the game. His impact in growing the sport, particularly encouraging women and young people to pick it up, endures as one of his deepest, lasting legacies. Together with Vanessa, we hope to honor Kobe and Gigi by championing a new generation for many years to come.”
On top of the new partnership, Nike and Vanessa will collaborate on establishing a youth basketball center in Southern California. Not only will we get the iconic sneakers Kobe wore during his legendary career, but this partnership will bring a lot of good to the Southern California region.
While all the details were not released, hopefully part of the deal includes having more inventory available to the public. Regardless, Kobe sneakers are back, this is the best news we’ve gotten this year.