The Mamba Sports Academy, co-owned by the late Kobe Bryant, today said it will remove the basketballer’s nickname, “Mamba” from the institution’s name in his honour.
The California-based academy’s move comes four months after the basketball legend, along with his teen daughter and seven others, died in a helicopter crash.
The Southern California sports facility retired his nickname and rebranded itself nearly four months after the basketball icon’s death in a helicopter crash.
In a release today, the facility said it will return to its original name of Sports Academy and retire “Mamba”.
In explaining the decision, a release from the Sports Academy said “with respect for an unparalleled legacy, the Academy will retire the “Mamba” in the Mamba Sports Academy name – to raise it to the rafters, where it belongs.”
The release said the move will “carry on the vision it curated during that special partnership,” adding that its mission remains the same and that the academy will support current professionals and guide the next generation of athletes.
The crash which killed Bryant and his fellow passengers is still under investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board. The group had been travelling to a basketball tournament at the academy when the helicopter crashed in thick fog near Los Angeles.
Bryant led the Los Angeles Lakers to five NBA titles during his 20 seasons with the franchise.