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Vanessa Bryant Demands Answers From Nike After Unauthorized Shoe Honoring Late Daughter Gigi Surfaces Online

Jun. 3 2021, Published 10:43 a.m. ET

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Vanessa Bryant is fuming after coming across an unauthorized Nike shoe honoring her daughter, Gianna "Gigi" Bryant, who died along with her father, Kobe Bryant, and seven other individuals in a tragic helicopter crash last January.

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"This is a shoe I worked on in honor of my daughter, Gianna," Vanessa wrote on Instagram overnight, accompanied by a photo of someone holding one of the sneakers. "It was going to be called the MAMBACITA shoe as an exclusive black and white colorway on her daddy's shoes. I picked the colors in honor of her uniform, the number 2 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."

vanessa bryant nike unauthorized shoe late daughter gigi mambacita r
Source: @vanessabryant/Instagram
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"The MAMBACITA shoes are NOT approved for sale," she continued. "I wanted it to be sold to honor my daughter with ALL of the proceeds benefitting our @mambamambacitasports foundation but I did not re-sign the Nike contract to sell these shoes. (The MAMBACITA shoes were not approved to be made in the first place.) Nike has NOT sent any of these pairs to me and my girls."

Vanessa added that she was confused as to how this or any individual could possibly be in possession of a pair of the shoes, and put the ball on Nike's court to come up with an explanation.

"I do not know how someone else has their hands on shoes I designed in honor of my daughter, Gigi and we don't," she concluded her lengthy statement. "I hope these shoes did not get sold. @nike."

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vanessa bryant nike unauthorized shoe late daughter gigi mambacita r
Source: @vanessabryant/Instagram

Reps for the company have not yet responded to Radar's request for comment.

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In addition, Vanessa shared a photo to her Instagram Story showing someone wearing the unreleased sneakers. "How/Why is someone wearing my daughter's shoe? This isn't right," she captioned it.

In another Story post, she highlighted a tweet from someone saying, "Do your re search a store in the U.K. called foot patrol released a few pairs early by accident [painted fingernails emoji] stay sleeping."

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vanessa bryant nike unauthorized shoe late daughter gigi mambacita r
Source: @vanessabryant/Instagram

In April, the widowed wife of the late NBA legend announced that she and the athlete's estate had decided not to renew their contract with the footwear brand.

"I was hoping to forge a lifelong partnership with Nike that reflects my husband's legacy," she wrote in part at the time. "We will always do everything we can to honor Kobe and Gigi's legacies."

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vanessa bryant nike unauthorized shoe late daughter gigi mambacita r
Source: MEGA

Gigi was 13 and Kobe was 41 when they passed.

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