Sportress of Blogitude

$2 million worth of Kobe Bryant merchandise sold on his final night


Staples Center set a worldwide arena record by selling a whopping $1.2 million in merchandise on Wednesday during Kobe Bryant’s final NBA game and $2 million in total when online sales are included.

Sean Ryan, AEG vice president of merchandise, told ESPN that the sales set a single-day record, eclipsing the $1 million in sales during a Led Zeppelin concert in London at o2 Arena in 2007.

All told, fans spent on average $61 apiece on merchandise during Kobe’s final night.

It goes without saying that the “24 Collection — a lavish set of memorabilia created in honor of Bryant’s retirement that featured a cap boasting 3.5 ounces of 18-karat gold and retailed for $38,000 — helped spur high-buck sales.

“The 24 Collection started with a vision of gold and diamonds and how this translated with the fans of Los Angeles,” Ryan said of the memorabilia, which was created by way of a partnership between AEG, Kobe Inc., Bryant’s merchandise partner Maingate and the Lakers. “We wanted every person who purchased with us the opportunity to have a piece which was special for the moment. The support and buy in exceeded our expectations.”

Even Bryant weighed in on the incredible interest in memorabilia celebrating his retirement.

“It says that fans are really appreciative of this moment and wanted to maybe have something they can remember,” he said.

Between in-arena and online sales, over $2 million in Bryant-related merchandise on Wednesday alone. Expect those numbers to continue to increase given that ticket stubs will soon go to auction and are expected to sell for at least $100 each. Also, “Mamba Out” — the words Bryant used to end his postgame speech — are now selling on Bryant’s official website for $25 apiece.