Fifty percent of the proceeds from the sale of four items of Kobe Bryant memorabilia sold at auction next month will benefit the the Bully Project, an anti-bullying campaign that seeks to create a culture of empathy.
The items are Bryant's 2000 NBA All-Star game ring, two of his game-worn high school uniforms and his 1996 Magic Roundball Classic All-Star medallion and ribbon.
The Bully Project is an offshoot of the award-winning film "Bully," which sparked national interest in the issue of kids tormenting each other.
“We’re delighted to have been chosen to benefit from the auction of these once-in-a-lifetime items from Kobe Bryant,” said Lee Hirsch, the director of "Bully." “Athletes set a powerful example when they speak out against bullying and we deeply appreciate the efforts of everyone involved in this auction for helping us to amplify this message.”
Sixteen other Bryant memorabilia items will be sold by Goldin Auctions during an auction that opened Monday and runs through July 19, including a pair of 2000 NBA championship rings that Bryant had given to his parents; game-worn Lakers jerseys from the 2001-02 and 2006-07 season; a UCLA basketball signed by John Wooden and personalized to Bryant; several rare prototype sneakers and other footwear; and other autographed items.
The championship rings and the items that will benefit charity were among a larger cache of memorabilia that had originally been consigned by Bryant's mother, Pamela, before Bryant's lawyers contended that she was not authorized to sell them. The parties settled the matter last week by agreeing to sell only six items, with proceeds from four of the items benefiting charity.
Ken Goldin, founder of Goldin Auctions, told The Times last week that he expected the six Bryant items to generate more than $500,000 in sales. As part of the settlement, Goldin said he could not divulge whether Pamela Bryant would keep a $450,000 advance she received or receive a percentage of sales from the auction.
The other Bryant items being sold at the auction were provided by other collectors.