Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant's contract with Nike has expired and his wife Vanessa Bryant confirmed to ESPN that the Kobe Bryant estate elected not to renew its contract with the popular clothing company. "Kobe's Nike contract expired on 4/13/21," Vanessa Bryant, widow of the Lakers legend, told ESPN.
"Kobe and Nike have made some of the most beautiful basketball shoes of all time, worn and adored by fans and athletes in all sports across the globe. It seems fitting that more NBA players wear my husband's product than any other signature shoe."
Vanessa Bryant was hoping to ink a lifelong partnership with Nike but it didn't happen. "My hope will always be to allow Kobe's fans to get and wear his products," Vanessa Bryant said. "I will continue to fight for that.
Kobe's products sell out in seconds. That says everything. "I was hoping to forge a lifelong partnership with Nike that reflects my husband's legacy. We will always do everything we can to honor Kobe and Gigi's legacies.
That will never change."
Nike respects the late Bryant
"Kobe Bryant was an important part of Nike's deep connection to consumers," Nike told ESPN in a statement. "He pushed us and made everyone around him better.
Though our contractual relationship has ended, he remains a deeply loved member of the Nike family." Meanwhile, Golden State Warriors star guard Stephen Curry passed Bryant on Monday night as he became the first player in NBA history age 33 or older to score 30 or more points in 11 straight games.
"I've seen Kobe Bryant early in his career, had a stretch where he went nuts," Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. "Obviously, Michael Jordan had some stretches where he just scored like crazy, but obviously nobody's ever shot the ball like this in the history of the game.
Even by Steph's own lofty standards, this is above and beyond." Last week, Curry made it past the great Wilt Chamberlain on the all-time Warriors' scoring list. "From Wilt's [record] last week and then this streak, I'm obviously aware," Curry said.
"But you don't put too much pressure on yourself, you just play basketball. ... Being aggressive, obviously, but kind of letting the game come to you. For me, that looks a certain type of way, but I'm having a blast out there just playing basketball and it's obviously working."