Vanessa Bryant has slammed Nike for allegedly producing a pair of sneakers that she designed to honour her daughter Gianna without her consent.
The 13-year-old budding basketball player was tragically killed in a helicopter crash in January last year, along with her father Kobe Bryant, and seven others.
Vanessa recently took to social media to share her frustration that the sports giant had reportedly produced her Mambacita design without her consent.
The 39-year-old said that she had worked hard on the sneakers, which are “an exclusive black and white colorway on her daddy’s shoes”.
“I picked the colours in honour of her uniform, the number two she wore just like her uniform, the inside pattern, Kobe and Gigi on the back in gold instead of Kobe’s signature, the inside shoe details (butterfly, wings, halo), etc,” she wrote in a statement shared on Instagram.
She explained that the Mambacita shoes are “NOT approved for sale” or to be made because she wanted all of the proceeds from the sneakers to go directly to the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation, which was renamed following the tragedy to honour Gianna’s nickname as well as Kobe’s.
“I did not re-sign the Nike contract and decided not to sell these shoes. (The MAMBACITA shoes were not approved to be made in the first place),” Vanessa explained, revealing she was furious to discover that the sports giant has seemingly already produced the shoes, as she shared a picture of someone holding up a pair of the Mambacita sneakers.
“Nike has NOT sent any of these pairs to me and my girls. I do not know how someone else has their hand on shoes I designed to honor my daughter, Gigi…I hope these shoes did not get sold @nike,” Vanessa concluded.
She also later shared a screenshot on her Instagram Stories of a tweet from the outlet Bleacher Report Kicks, that reported the Mambacita shoes would be released later this year.
A rep for Nike has yet to comment.
– Cover Media