Back in 2016, Drake had iconic leather designer, Jeff Hamilton create a custom Kobe Bryant, Farewell Mamba jacket during the 2016 NBA All Star Game in Toronto, Canada.
That All-Star Game was Bryant’s last and the Toronto, Canada icon wanted to pay homage to Bryant during his Farewell NBA Tour that season. “It was amazing,” Jeff Hamilton told me on the Heavy Live With Scoop B Show.
“And Drake being such a great artist and also being an icon of our times and also being able to commission me that jacket. And so, he had a lot of input with that jacket on what the idea of what he wanted. He had a clear idea of how to do it. It was the logistics that we needed to deal with the fact that the jacket had to have the Nike logos, it had to have the NBA logos and I wasn’t a NBA licensee at the time so I had to go through the NBA and all the red tape to make sure it was done, and the jacket came out really special. The jacket was VERY expensive. It was about 7 to 8 thousand dollars and I made a deal with Drake that he was going to pay me a portion of that and the rest he was going to make me a post and tagged me because you know, with Instagram I was growing with followers on my Instagram and that weekend, my Instagram probably jumped that weekend to like 50,000 followers in a weekend and everybody up to this day said, ‘That’s the guy who did the Drake jacket!’ If I had that jacket today, I would probably at $7,000 or $8,000 dollars I could probably sell 100 to 200 jackets today if I had it.”
Here’s the craziest part: according to Jeff Hamilton, Drake is no longer in possession of the jacket. “The interesting part about that jacket is that he did not give that jacket to Kobe,” he told the Heavy Live With Scoop B Show.
“He gave it to Steph Curry. Steph Curry owns that jacket! I would assume that he would’ve given it to Kobe, right? But he gave it to Steph Curry! [laughs]… I think he wore it a couple of times and then… but I saw the interview one time when he gave the jacket to Steph Curry.”
Interesting stuff there.
Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash that took the lives of nine people, including Bryant’s daughter, Gigi on Sunday, January 26. The NBA has tributed Bryant all year and it’s interesting to look back on his legacy.
“So many memories,” Hamilton tells Heavy Live With Scoop B.
“I mean, I’ve met him so many times and I’ve done a lot of jackets for him, for Vanessa… I mean, he was a VERY special person and he was a kid when I met him. I remember sitting on the court; I had courtside seats because Jerry Buss – that’s how I got my floor seats with the Lakers; I traded jackets with Jerry Buss and he wanted to give me season tickets and I said, “No. I don’t want season tickets. I want season tickets on the court…” he said, ‘Well you’re going to have to wait.’ And I said, “I don’t care. I’ll wait as many years if I have to, but I want only to see the Lakers on the court [courtside]…” and when Kobe came in I was really excited because you could see that he was so anxious to play. He was like a ball of fire waiting to explode because he was just so excited to be a part of everything. The way he carried himself; just like Michael and it was beautiful. I met him when he came in early on. Some friends of mine were doing some signings with him and I would attend all his stuff when I was around him and he seemed to be – and people didn’t know that he was very shy and into himself a little bit, but you know as he became what Kobe is and always will be, he was a little bit more secure of himself but, he’s always been very classy, very elegant and a man of his word and he’s always going to be missed and he’s ALWAYS going to be in our hearts. We love him. He was a really good man and we are fortunate to have some of our NBA players to be such great icons and such great people like LeBron; he’s such an amazing human being for what does for his community. Not only does he put his heart and soul on the court, but what he does off the court and especially this year with Black Lives Matter and the way that they have a voice and to use their voices in the right way, not for selfish reasons. All the schools that he’s put together and the way that’s helped out all his friends and helps out his friends that became managers that grew up with him. I read one his posts two days ago about his mom and knowing where he comes from an underprivileged area in Akron and just to be elevating himself and that is what I admire more and what he does for people; not just what you can do on the court, but off the court as well.”