Last week the Los Angeles Lakers vanquished the Miami Heat in six games to capture their 17th NBA Championship, tying the Boston Celtics for the most titles in league history.

Led by LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the Lakers were able to withstand the never-before-seen stresses of the NBA bubble amid the COVID-19 pandemic–and a surging Jimmy Butler–to win the championship. James and others talked at length throughout the season about their added motivation to win the franchise’s first title since 2010–wanting to win the title for their friend and Laker legend Kobe Bryant, who passed away tragically back in January.

Aside from the Lakers, one of the biggest winners during the three-month stint in the NBA bubble in Orlando was the Kobe V sneaker. In the months since Bryant’s death, it has evolved into his most popular and expensive silhouette, with new retro versions popping up every month. Anthony Davis wore an all-gold custom pair during the Finals as well as a Bulls-inspired red and black version (Davis is a Chicago kid) in the closeout game, in addition to dozens of the stock colorways he wore throughout the season.

Resident NBA Sneaker King P.J. Tucker received his own Kobe V while away at the bubble, as did DeMar DeRozan. You’d be hard pressed to watch any NBA game this season and not find a Kobe V somewhere on the court.

In the spirit of Kobe and the Lakers’ success, we kick off this week’s list with some special Kobe Vs and continue with other playoff-christened kicks throughout the years.

No other retailer has the same breadth and depth of selection as Grailed. From Cork LeBron’s to AI’s Stepovers (and everything in between)–in no particular order, these are our picks for Grailed Sneaker Stories of the Week.

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