Kobe Bryant switched jersey numbers this year. Gone is #8. The chic numeric convergence is #24. He’s got a deal going with Upper Deck right now to auction off the "last #8 signed jerseys".
He says he won’t wear the number 8 again. He won’t even sign a #8 jersey. Kobe Bryant is Mr. 24 now, pulling a Jordan without actually retiring.
Jordan’s short-lived switch to 45 has made collector’s items out of those few shirts he wore after his first comeback. Bryant will give collectors the chance to own a signed #8 jersey through an auction taking place through this weekend.
Bryant and Upper Deck Authenticated (UDA), will give basketball fans and collectors a chance to bid on the last eight number ‘8’ jerseys he will ever sign, and eight framed autographed photographs – each with an inscription story detailing a milestone moment from Bryant in his own words and handwriting. Each of these items is a rare one-of-one. Also, bidders will have the chance to cast the winning bid for the first number ’24’ autographed game-worn jersey
ever-signed, and number ’24’ autographed game-worn sneakers.
"It’s the evolution, as a player and as a person," Bryant says in a press release. "When I look at these jerseys, I see a lot of stories. Moments where I have had triumphs, moments where I’ve stumbled…let’s open up the next chapter."
"The auction of these rare items gives collectors and fans a chance to
own a piece of NBA history and Upper Deck Authenticated is proud to be
part of it," said Tim Muret, vice president Of Upper Deck Authenticated.
Framed Autographed Photographs Available:
*Kobe reflects on his famed High School career.
* Bryant details his memories of winning the Slam Dunk contest
during the 1997 NBA All-Star Game activities.
* Kobe describes his feelings on achieving his first NBA
* Number ’24’ pens his thoughts on winning back-to-back NBA
* Kobe explains what it’s like to be named the MVP in the NBA
* Bryant inscribes the journey to win his third NBA Championship.
* Kobe gives fans insight into what it felt like to be the
youngest player in league history to score 10,000 points.
* Kobe details what it felt like to drop 81 points in one game.
Upper Deck’s press release promises that portions of the money collected will "go to the Kobe’s foundation, the Vivo Foundation – a charitable initiative dedicated to enhancing the lives of young people and making dreams come true through educational and cultural enrichment opportunities and financial support."