First I have to apologize for going completely out of chronological order on all of this Kobe coverage. This amazing event happened about a week ago.
Last week, Nike along with Staple Design, created and threw a limited VIP launch event of the Zoom Kobe 1 sneaker. The event was only open to the first 50 members of the NRF to RSVP.
On my way down to the event, I stopped in Transit on Broadway and Bond and much to my chigrin, I was able to scoop up a pair of Black/White-Varsity Maize ZK1’s. I bought these with hopes that Kobe would sign them and add a jewel to my collection. I got down to The Reed Space a little too early and I had to wait outside for a bit. The line was pretty small with about 5-6 other people getting there early.
The doors opened at around 7pm and Kobe arrived to a round of applause at around 7:45. The atmoshphere was very intimate and personal. We were all within feet of Kobe who seemed right at home with Bobbito Garcia (Is is the Shoes?, Bounce Magazine, 89.1, etc….SHOUT!) as host. Kobe fielded questions from the audience for about an hour. He spoke very well and answered every question thoroughly, honestly, and comfortably. He referred to himself as a savage on the court, he said that he and Shaq have a mutual respect for each other, that he was in the zone during the 81 pt game through using a form of meditation that Phil Jackson has taught his players (its this crazy meditation that you can use on yourself while playing, he says you dont have to sit with your eyes closed to do it), he also went on to describe the method behind the sneaker.
Kobe gave the designers at Nike a peak into the attitude he planned on approaching the court with this season. He descibed this attitude as “raw” and “hungry”, an attitude directed at quieting all of his haters. Nike took that mindset and developed the ZK1. Details such as the exposed stitching and the large teeth on the side, take Kobe’s attitude and transpose them onto the sneaker. Kobe also described his logo, or what he likes to call, his symbol.
Kobe created the symbol while he was at home with his family. The symbol is what he also calls his “emotional sheath”. For those that might not know, a sheath is where a warrior/samurai/knight would place there sword into when preparing for battle. Kobe places all of his emotions into this sheath, and reaches into it (to take out his emotional sword?) right before game time. That is actually pretty dope!
All in all the event was great! And if you take a look at the last picture……
Autographed Zoom Kobe 1’s