Nuevo Culture

Vanessa Bryant Shuts Down Critics of New Kobe Statue During Unveiling — See the Moment Here

On Thursday (February 8), Vanessa Bryant spoke about her late husband, Kobe Bryant, during a ceremony where a statue was unveiled in honor of the NBA superstar.

The 19-foot bronze statue now stands in front of the Lakers’ arena. It depicts Bryant wearing his No. 8 jersey with his index finger raised in the air. The pose was captured in a photo following his 81-point performance in January 2006. According to Vanessa, the image used to create the statue was chosen by Kobe himself.

“For the record, Kobe picked the pose you’re about to see,” Vanessa said before the statue was uncovered. “So, if anyone has any issues with it … tough s–t.”

Vanessa revealed that the statue unveiled on Thursday is one of three statues that will immortalize Kobe outside of the downtown arena. Another statue will feature Kobe in his No. 24 jersey. The third statue will depict Kobe and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, who died alongside him and seven other people in a helicopter crash on January 26, 2020.

“It goes without saying that today is an especially sad day for us since Kobe and Gigi aren’t here for what is supposed to be an incredibly joyous moment in Kobe’s legacy,” Vanessa said at the start of her remarks. “This moment isn’t just for Kobe. It’s for all of you who have been rooting for him all these years.”

Vanessa also revealed that she requested some special details to be added to the first statue, including the names of all her and Kobe’s daughters tattooed onto his arm.

“Although some of our girls weren’t born at the time of that particular moment, that specific detail is for Kobe,” she said.

Watch the entire Kobe Bryant statue unveiling with Vanessa Bryant below.