Vanessa Bryant, the widow of Kobe Bryant, has created a new pair of Nike sneakers called Protro 8. Nike unveiled the designs of these sneakers on Thursday. They are set to be available for purchase on August 23, coinciding with what would have been Kobe Bryant’s 45th birthday. Vanessa Bryant previewed the sneakers on Instagram, referring to them as the “Kobe 8 ‘Halo'” style, with more variations expected in the future.
Vanessa Bryant, the mother to Natalia, Gigi, Bianka, and Capri, designed the Halo shoe concept to honor Kobe Bryant’s birthday annually, according to Daily Mail. The sneakers are a contemporary version of Kobe Bryant’s eighth shoe released in 2012. This marks the second release in Kobe’s line since the Kobe 4 Protro Mamabacitas, which came out in May.
Nike has introduced enhancements to the latest model, including the replacement of the Lunarlon midsole with Nike React foam, resulting in improved comfort, responsiveness, and durability. Updates have also been made to the herringbone traction pattern, as well as the embroidery of the Swoosh on the upper and the Mamba logo on the tongue.
Following the expiration of the late Kobe Bryant’s Nike deal in April 2021, Vanessa Bryant announced in March 2022 on Instagram that she had reached a new agreement with Nike. This deal enables Nike to create shoes as a tribute to Kobe and Gigi Bryant. Vanessa Bryant expressed pride in the popularity of Kobe Bryant’s shoes among NBA players and his global fanbase’s continued demand for them.
Vanessa Bryant’s new partnership with Nike ensures the continued availability of Kobe and Gigi Bryant Nike products, with all net proceeds from Gianna’s shoes being donated annually to the Mamba and Mambacita Sports Foundation (M&MSF).
Vanessa Bryant expressed gratitude for the collaboration with Nike, highlighting the creation of a youth basketball center in Southern California that will perpetuate the Mamba Mentality for young athletes in the future.