This is a partnership with the late Kobe Bryant’s wife, Vanessa Bryant, and the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation, a nonprofit organization founded in memory of Kobe and his daughter, Gigi Bryant, following their deaths in January of 2020.
Kentucky has actually worked with Mamba & Mambacita before. In October of 2022, the Kentucky men’s and women’s basketball programs partnered with Mamba & Mambacita to host a free basketball skills camp at the Joe Craft Center.
And this past May, Mamba & Mambacita gifted the men’s team Mambacita Kobe 4s prior to their trip to Canada for the GLOBL JAM.
I just received the most incredible gift from Vanessa and Natalia Bryant.— John Calipari (@UKCoachCalipari) May 1, 2023
Happy 17th birthday, Gigi!!
Thinking today of Gigi and all of the lives she touched and continues to touch!!#PlayGigisWay pic.twitter.com/mruCZIFaop
According to Pilgrim, this partnership features players wearing exclusive Kentucky-themed Kobe sneakers and apparel this season, while there could be special uniforms featuring the Mamba logo incorporated in the future.
Pilgrim also notes that Vanessa hand-picked Kentucky for this program, though other schools will eventually join it.