As the WNBA and NBA continue to plan out how they will use their seasons in Florida to take a stand for broader social issues, Chicago Sky forward and two-time NCAA champion at UConn Gabby Williams released photos of the Nike sneakers she’ll wear on the court when the WNBA kicks off on July 24 in Bradenton, Fla.
The sneakers are a tribute to the late Gigi Bryant, the daughter of Kobe Bryant. She, her father, and seven others died on Jan. 26 in a helicopter accident, and the WNBA has been dedicated to honoring Gigi’s memory since her passing.
via jd_thepainter/Instagram, gabbywilliams/Instagram pic.twitter.com/YYxOZ5FcdW
— The Undefeated (@TheUndefeated) June 30, 2020
The artist and designer Justin Davis announced his partnership with Williams on Instagram, saying, “Hey @gabbywilliams, Gigi is coming down to Florida with ya … Fly high angel…we all miss you guys!”
Over the past several years until her abrupt passing, Gigi often discussed her dreams of attending UConn and playing in the WNBA. It was one of the key focuses of Kobe’s post-playing career to draw attention to and support the WNBA. At an exhibition game between the women’s national basketball team and the UConn women’s team days after the crash, a seat was saved and decorated with flowers and Gigi’s No. 2 jersey to commemorate her relationship with the school. When the WNBA became the first league to pull off a virtual draft this spring, it kicked off the draft broadcast with a moving tribute to Gigi and her two teammates, Peyton Chester and Alyssa Altobelli, who also passed away in the crash.