Kobe Bryant memorabilia has inevitably increased in value since the five-time NBA Champion's sudden and shocking death on January 26, 2020.
As an example, one avid collector snatched up a towel that Bryant draped over his shoulders during his farewell speech following the final game of his NBA season on April 13, 2016. Bryant finished with 60 points in the contest, and ended his speech with the infamous sign-off "Mamba out," before dropping the microphone at half-court.
The Body Armor towel seen strung over his shoulders in the picture below was originally purchased at an auction in 2016 for $8,265.00. On Sunday, amidst the coronavirus pandemic, the original owner of the towel put it up for auction again, where it was purchased for more than $33,000.
Arizona-based Iconic Auctions listed the towel on a virtual auction along with two tickets from Bryant's final game. All of the items were accompanied by a letter of authenticity from Iconic Auctions.
The winner of the auction was David Kohler, a diehard Lakers fan and memorabilia collector, who won the items with a bid of $33,077.16 according to Jeff Woolf, the president of Iconic Auctions.
"He is a devoted Lakers fan," Woolf told CNN on Monday. "His long-term plan is to create a museum in Southern California."
In addition to the towel, Kohler also paid over $30,000 for an autographed middle school yearbook signed by Bryant.
"In a few years you probably will be dunking on me—Not! How about those Lakers. Your friend, Kobe Bryant," read the inscription written by Bryant when he was likely 13 or 14 years old.
Bryant, and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna, and seven others were killed in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, CA.