The uniforms were created as a part of Nike’s “Lore Series,” a collaboration between the company and former players meant to create a final look that honors their playing days. Bryant’s design references his “Black Mamba” nickname with a black snakeskin print. It also has 3-D lettering and 16 stars to represent the number of times the Lakers brought home a championship.
As the Los Angeles Times reported, the Lakers had announced they would wear their custom uniforms on their second playoff game against the Portland Trail Blazers. The date of the game, Aug. 24, falls on the day after what would have been Bryant’s 42nd birthday.
It is date that holds significance because it includes 8 and 24, both of the jersey numbers Bryant wore during his 20-year run with the Lakers. Aug. 24 is also a day that is now recognized as Kobe Bryant Day in Orange County.
According to PEOPLE, Bryant’s wife Vanessa posted a photo of the Black Mamba apparel on her Instagram Story. One of the uniforms honored her late daughter Gianna with the No. 2, her jersey number at the Black Mamba Sports Academy, in a patch shaped like a heart.
Since his tragic death, the former Lakers player has received a few posthumous honors. Bryant received the Emmy Governors Award in honor of his “philanthropy, community building and inspiration that extended beyond the basketball court.” He was also inducted into the National Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.