Kobe Bryant fans will have a new way of memorializing the late NBA star. Nike has teamed up with Vanessa Bryant, Kobe’s widow, for a new sneaker coming out on Aug. 23, which would have been his 45th birthday.
“Partnering with Nike Basketball, Vanessa Bryant imagined and created the Halo shoe concept and launch as a way to honor Kobe’s birthday each year,” the company said in a press release. “The Halo concept will be an annual release that will honor and celebrate this special date.”
First up is the Kobe 8 Proto Halo, the newest addition to the Protro lineup, which will be available through Nike’s SNKRS app and at select global retailers.
In addition to its triple-white colorway, the sneaker features “new updates in design and performance innovation,” including a Nike React foam — for comfort, responsiveness, and durability — and an updated herringbone traction pattern for better grip.
The design, meanwhile, features an embroidered Nike “swoosh” on the upper side of the shoe and Kobe’s “mamba” logo on the tongue.
Vanessa, 41, posted a promotional video for the Kobe 8 Proto Halo sneaker on Instagram Wednesday.
“This will be one of many Kobe 8 ‘Halo’ styles coming soon,” she told fans, adding a white heart emoji.
Kobe, who played for the Los Angeles Lakers for two decades, died at age 41 in a January 2020 helicopter crash in Calabasas, Calif., along with Gianna Bryant, his and Vanessa’s 13-year-old daughter, and seven others.
Nike is also honoring Kobe with the Mamba League Invitational, a youth basketball tournament at Los Angeles’ Crypto.com Arena. Eight teams of Los Angeles high-school basketball players will compete in the two-day tournament. The invitational will conclude on Aug. 24, which has been designated Mamba Day in a tribute to Kobe’s two jersey numbers, 8 and 24.