The Lakers will boast the hottest ticket in the NBA this season on Monday night when the franchise will retire both of Kobe Bryant’s numbers against the Golden State Warriors.
When the 8 and 24 get pulled up into the rafters at Staples Center, there will undoubtedly be thousands decked out in Kobe jerseys and gear. But the Lakers are looking to capitalize on one last bit of Kobe-mania and cash in on the pandemonium around his retirement ceremony. For those that don’t have some already (or those looking to commemorate the moment), the Lakers have set up an entire “Kobe Collection” on their website for fans to purchase various bits Kobe merchandise.
As of writing, three of the four t-shirts have already sold out. The only one remaining is the Lakers logo, but instead of Lakers it says Kobe. The other three — a shirsey, a banner tee, and the throwback picture of Kobe holding the trophy — have sold out in men’s sizes.
However, the real stars of the Kobe Collection are the hats. You may wonder how many hats one collection could possibly have and you would probably not come close to the correct answer. Five? Please. Ten? Keep going. Fifteen? Nope. HOW MANY HATS CAN THERE BE?!
Eighteen is the answer. How do you make 18 hats for one player? Good question. The answer is that there are multiple colors and they broke his career accomplishments into the Nos. 8 and 24. Those were split onto various hats: black for his career, purple for 8, yellow for 24. You may be wondering how that even works, and, buddy, let me tell you it’s not good.
Let’s start with the various jersey retirement commemorative hats. This part, I get. People might want different color options. Sure.
Now it starts to get weird. Have you ever wanted a hat featuring stats? Well the Lakers are here for you. Games played? Put it on a hat. Points scored? Put. It. On. A. Hat. Scoring titles?! PUT. IT. ON. A. HAT. All-Star appearances in the No. 8? HAT HAT HAT HAT HAT. Games played in the No. 8? PUT IT ON A MOTHERF*CKIN HAT.
WE AREN’T DONE FOLKS. Games played in the No. 24? HAT. Scoring titles in the No. 24? HAT. All-Star games in the No. 24? HAT. Championships in the No. 24? ISSA HAT. Points scored in the No. 24? BETTER BELIEVE THERE’S A HAT FOR THAT. Overall championships? H. A. T. All of those same things for the No. 24? WE GOT HATS FOR THAT AS WELL.
REP YOUR FAVORITE VERSION OF KOBE WITH STAT HATS THAT DON’T MAKE PARTICULAR SENSE BABY!
I would love to talk to the people buying the number specific stat hats. There’s no reason to buy those hats. It’s absurd. It’s capitalism at its worst. Merchandise for merchandise’s sake. Also, I’m totally buying the games played in the No. 8 hat.