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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 12/3/2023

Kobe Bryant’s first career road game for the Los Angeles Lakers was November 5, 1996, at Madison Square Garden. The 18-year-old pup scored one point against the Knicks. On April 11, 2016, Mamba played his 785th (including playoffs) and final career road contest in Oklahoma City. Wanting to put on a show for Thunder fans one last time, Kobe played the entire first quarter and tallied all 13 of his points in that frame. At 37 years old with twenty plus years of NBA mileage, that was all the offense he could muster. OKC cruised to a 112-79 victory, but all attention was on #24.

Ironically, Lakers then-head coach Byron Scott was Bryant’s teammate in ’96-97 – his final season as a player. He noticed the embers starting to burn in young Kobe back then, and it was only fitting that Scott was there two decades later to see Mamba Mentality come full circle during his farewell tour.

"[Kobe] found out he had a lot of love out there…because he came to play every single night," said Scott. "His competitive nature and the way he went about his business gained him a lot of respect around the world."

Early in the second half, Kobe and Durant went one-on-one for old times’ sake. Kobe’s last shot was a missed three with 5:29 left in the third quarter. Midway through the fourth with Bryant on the bench, fans began cheering for him to re-enter. "We want Kobe! We want Kobe!” Then it was simply, "Kobe, Kobe, Kobe…"

I tried to give it all I had,” recalled Bryant. “I tried to loosen up in the locker room coming out for the second half, but I couldn't move well at all."

Throughout his legendary career, the Black Mamba earned his superhero moniker on the road, drawing nervous boos from opposing fans and the aggregate awe from those same distant admirers after one of his rim-rattling dunks or fadeaway swishes. Bryant delivered some of his finest performances away from L.A. – 61 points at MSG in 2009 (see Lot 25 for game ball); 60 in Memphis; 58 in Charlotte; 51 against Golden State, Phoenix, Denver and Sacramento. Including the playoffs, Bryant scored 19,575 points and played 29,018 minutes on the road in his career (basketball-reference). Fortunately, Kobe left enough in the tank for his breathtaking “Mamba Out” 60-point final game performance at Staples Center two nights later.

The farewell season for Kobe Bryant was a physical and mental struggle – he averaged 17.6 points in 28 minutes and the Lakers finished last with a 17-65 record – but it certainly had a fairytale ending. Kobe gave his worldwide viewing audience the ultimate going-away present. Featured here is another special gift for Kobe collectors: his final career game worn shoes which have been conclusively photo-matched by both Sports Investors and Resolution Photomatching.

Bryant's 11th edition shoe from Nike was another huge success from designer Eric Avar, who worked with Kobe throughout the history of his signature model line. The snazzy lightweight low-tops became the first Nike basketball sneaker to introduce patented Flyknit uppers with a thermoplastic polyurethane yarn for added strength.

Throughout my time with Nike, I’ve obsessed [about] the details of my shoes,” said Bryant upon its release in January 2016. “For the Kobe 11, we worked to perfect Flyknit for basketball.

The first Kobe XI release, known as the "Achilles Heel”, came in red and black as a nod to Greek god Achilles with ties to Kobe’s own career path. These offered Kobe XI Elite Lows come in classic Lakers-themed purple and gold colorways – fitting for his final road contest. Four red horizontal stitch marks on the left heel signify the four feet of thread used in Bryant’s 2013 Achilles surgery. Full-length Lunarlon foam on the midsole combined with a Zoom Air unit on the bottom heel and translucent rubber outsoles complete the innovative design. The purple tongues have Kobe's unique logo (“The Sheath”) in yellow, the insoles are custom-fit for additional support, and the original yellow laces are present. Coming in his standard size 14, the shoes have proper “Season SP16 Promo Sample” tagging on the interior and show appropriate single-game usage.

Kobe’s final road game sneakers are one of the most significant game-used basketball shoes to hit the auction block. They have been perfectly preserved since the last time he laced them up. The likelihood of any uniform items from the “Mamba Out” game ever seeing the light of day is slim-to-none. What an amazing opportunity to own the last pair of Kobe game worn shoes that will ever truly become available. Includes full photo-matched paperwork from Resolution and Sports Investors.

Estimate: $100,000+ No reserve

Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $10,000
Final prices include buyers premium.: $118,230
Number Bids:20
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