On August 23, which would have been Kobe Bryant’s birthday, Nike released a revamped classic: the Kobe 8 Protro Halo. This shoe isn’t just another pair of kicks — it’s a tribute to a basketball legend and his “Black Mamba” identity. The release was made even more poignant as Vanessa Bryant, Kobe’s widow, collaborated with Nike Basketball on the Halo concept as an annual homage to her late husband’s special day.
Vanessa Bryant and Nike’s Collaborative Annual Release
In collaboration with Nike Basketball, Vanessa Bryant envisioned the Halo shoe as an annual commemoration of Kobe’s birthday. Designed in an elegant triple-white colorway, the shoe is not just a fashion statement, but an enduring symbol of Kobe’s far-reaching impact on the game and beyond.
Elevated Performance Meets Iconic Design
The Kobe 8 Protro Halo, which hit the shelves six days ago, is an innovative upgrade over its predecessor. Retaining the silhouette’s iconic look, the shoe incorporates advanced design elements like an embroidered Swoosh on the upper and an embroidered Mamba logo on the tongue. Key to its enhanced performance is the replacement of the Lunarlon midsole with Nike React foam, aimed at maximizing comfort and responsiveness. The herringbone traction pattern has also been updated for optimal grip.
The Continuing Legacy of the Kobe 8
The original Kobe 8 made waves for being the lightest in the Kobe shoe line upon its 2012 launch. Featured in collections like the Prelude Pack in 2014 and the Fade to Black Collection in 2016, the Kobe 8 has maintained its presence in sneaker culture. This Protro release enriches that legacy by adding a poignant emotional layer, honoring Kobe’s enduring impact on basketball and society.
Extending the Celebration to the Basketball Court
Coinciding with the shoe’s release, Nike hosted the Mamba League Invitational, a two-day youth basketball tournament, outside the Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles. Featuring eight teams of promising high school talent from L.A., both male and female, the tournament concluded with a championship game on Mamba Day, August 24, capturing the competitive spirit Kobe was known for.
Limited Edition, Lasting Impact
The Kobe 8 Protro Halo, released on August 23, has been available for purchase on SNKRS and at select global retailers. As the shoe serves as a tribute to a basketball legend, it’s no surprise that the release has been met with enthusiasm, appealing to sneaker collectors and Kobe Bryant fans alike.