Nike Australia has removed the option to buy Kobe Bryant merchandise online after the legendary basketballer’s death, with a spokesperson for the athletic clothing brand saying his signature line has entirely sold out.
While a menu directing shoppers to Kobe’s shoes and apparel remains on the site, visitors are now greeted by a blank error page. Searching for the brand’s broader range of basketball shoes brings up a tribute page, which honours the longtime Nike collaborator for his extraordinary work on the court.
A Nike spokesperson told NBC the brand didn’t choose to remove their collaborative products while they were still in stock. Instead, Nike is reportedly figuring out what to do with upcoming releases in the Kobe lineup, which includes some of the brand’s most popular basketball shoes of recent decades.
The retired athlete’s tragic death has, sadly, spiked interest in his shoes on the second-hand market. With many basketballers and sneaker enthusiast looking to honour the star by wearing his Nike gear, streetwear and fashion resale site Grailed has experienced a sudden influx of Kobe gear.
Sneaker market StockX has also seen a dramatic uptick in trade on Kobe-branded shoes. At time of writing, 17 of the top 40 most popular shoes on the site are Kobe signatures, and sale prices on some models have more than doubled.
A StockX spokesperson told Business Insider the brand will donate all proceeds from recent sales of Kobe-branded gear to the Kobe and Vanessa Bryant Family Foundation, which has partnered with initiatives aimed at homeless youth.
“The increased interest is a testament to his impact both on and off the court,” they said.