After Dwyane Wade gave Kobe Bryant a totally unnecessary, somewhat flagrant hard foul at this year’s All-Star Game, the Los Angeles Lakers superstar wound up with a busted nose. Because of that busted nose, doctors forced Kobe to a wear a face mask. Predictably, hilarity ensued.
First, in an effort to prove that he didn’t care about what he looked like, Kobe came out wearing the sort of plain, run-of-the-mill clear mask that you generally see everyone with broken noses play with. Then, realizing that he was something of a fashion icon, Kobe trotted out an ill-advised Batman-looking option that made him the subject of almost as much ridicule as he got when he participated in that one photo shoot. Yes, that photo shoot. Eventually, the world got used to this new and improved mask-sporting Kobe because, really, nobody (us included) seems to remember when he stopped wearing it.
Well, even though he stopped wearing the mask at some point, he didn’t actually throw it away. Rather, he saved it – knowing full well that he would eventually find someone who would want to buy it. Or, as he said, to "see if anybody's dumb enough to buy that sweaty mask."
Turns out, someone was dumb enough.
A little over a week ago, Kobe put his mask up for auction on eBay. The same mask that he had drooled all over, the same mask that he said he sweated into and then swallowed the sweat from – that fantastic collector’s item was put on the market. After 20 bidders placed 129 separate bids, the mask was ultimately sold for $69,100.
According to Kevin Ding, all proceeds will go to the Kobe and Vanessa Bryant Family Foundation's Youth Homelessness Initiative. And since Vanessa is reportedly taking three of Kobe’s homes in the divorce proceedings, we assume that’s just another way of saying that Kobe is keeping the money for himself.
(Kudos to Yahoo! Sports for the find)