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Rare Kobe Bryant Photos to Be Sold as NFTs Benefitting Mamba & Mambacita Foundation

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIAugust 24, 2021

FILE - In this Jan. 26, 2021, file photo, Adam Dergazarian, bottom center, pays his respects for Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, in front of a mural painted by artist Louie Sloe Palsino in Los Angeles. Federal safety officials are expected to vote Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2021, on what likely caused the helicopter carrying Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter and seven others to crash into a Southern California hillside last year, killing all aboard. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)
AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File

Eight photographs of late Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant will be sold as non-fungible tokens (NFT) through an auction run by Cryptograph, and all proceeds from the sales will benefit the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation.

ESPN's Dave McMenamin relayed the news from Cryptograph co-founder Tommy Alastra and provided more information on the images, which can be found on Cryptograph's website:

"Bryant posed for the black-and-white images in his early 20s during a magazine shoot with photographer Davis Factor. The 1999 shoot took place at an abandoned warehouse in downtown L.A. In the photos, Bryant wears a variety of outfits as he preens for the camera."

The auction started at 1 p.m. ET Tuesday and will run until 1 p.m. ET on Friday.

Alastra said the auction opened on Aug. 24 because it is recognized as Kobe Dayβ€”for his jersey numbers (8 and 24)β€”and in honor of Bryant's birthday on Aug. 23.

Bryant and his daughter Gianna were among nine people who died in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California on January 26, 2020.

The Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation is a non-profit organization with a mission to create a "positive impact for underserved athletes and women in sports."

"The foundation provides funding and sports programming for underserved athletes to enable participation in school and/or league sports that enrich socio-emotional and physical development," the foundation's website states.

"Kobe and Gigi's vision was to create a world where young women had equal opportunity to pursue their dreams through sports and life. The foundation honors their legacy by funding programs that support their vision."