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Unseen Kobe Bryant photos to be released as NFTs

Sportsnaut
Feb 23, 2020; Los Angeles, California, USA; Detailed view of the back of Los Angeles Lakers jersey worn by Los Angeles Kings goalkeeper Los Angeles Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick (32) with the numeral 8 and the words "In the Loving Memory of Kobe Bryant, Gianna Bryant, Alyssa Altobelli, Keri Altobelli, John Altobelli, Christina Mauser, Payton Chester, Sarah Chester and Ara Zobyan" before the NHL game against the Edmonton Oilers  at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 23, 2020; Los Angeles, California, USA; Detailed view of the back of Los Angeles Lakers jersey worn by Los Angeles Kings goalkeeper Los Angeles Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick (32) with the numeral 8 and the words “In the Loving Memory of Kobe Bryant, Gianna Bryant, Alyssa Altobelli, Keri Altobelli, John Altobelli, Christina Mauser, Payton Chester, Sarah Chester and Ara Zobyan” before the NHL game against the Edmonton Oilers at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

A blockchain company converted eight never-before-seen photographs of the late Kobe Bryant into non-fungible tokens (or NFTs) and will auction them off to benefit a charitable foundation in his honor.

The company, called Cryptograph, plans to honor Bryant’s memory with the NFTs of eight unreleased photos taken of the Los Angeles Lakers star during a 1999 magazine photo shoot.

Proceeds from the auctions will go to the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to Bryant and his late daughter, Gianna “Gigi” Bryant, that aims to help young underserved athletes, particularly women.

The enterprise is not officially aligned with Bryant’s family or estate, Cryptograph co-founder Tommy Alastra told ESPN.

The NFTs are up for auction for 72 hours starting Tuesday, which the Los Angeles area celebrates as “Kobe Bryant Day” because Bryant’s jersey Nos. 8 and 24 align with the date Aug. 24.

Bryant, who would have been 43 years old Monday, died in a helicopter crash in January 2020 along with 13-year-old Gianna Bryant and seven other victims.

NFTs are stored on a blockchain as a unique digital file, making them valuable to collectors.

–Field Level Media