Kobe Bryant dubbed himself with the somewhat ungainly nickname “Black Mamba” several years ago after seeing Kill Bill, the time at which basically everybody learned that black mamba snake is a thing that exists. When he retired earlier this year, he punctuated his farewell speech with “Mamba out,” and soon thereafter shirts with that phrase were sold. As such, perhaps you might be surprised to find out that Bryant is only now getting around to filing a trademark on that nickname.
Yes, even though Bryant and Nike have been using the Black Mamba moniker to hock their wares for years, it wasn’t until May 2 that Kobe’s company filed for the trademark with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Of course, being that Nike has already been using Black Mamba, not much is likely to change, save for perhaps Kobe and company getting more litigious about other people trying to make money off his now trademarked nickname.
Though Bryant is now retired, he still has name brand recognition, and his jersey was the second highest seller behind Steph Curry this season. This is the 11th trademark that Bryant’s company has filed for. Other trademarks include “”HeroVillain,” “Create Forever,” “Dream Epic” and “Friends Hang Sometimes, Banners Hang Forever.” Needless to say, those are all terrible. Black Mamba may be a silly nickname, but it’s a big step up for Kobe’s trademark game.