The NBA unveiled its newly redesigned collection of All-Star Game trophies and rings on Thursday, and the new MVP trophy is a sight to behold.
The All-Star MVP trophy has been permanently renamed in honor of Kobe Bryant, who died in a helicopter crash in 2020, and the redesign contains so many special details you wouldn’t recognize when you first look at it. Every part of the trophy has been designed to pay tribute to Bryant and his spectacular career.
The new Kobe Bryant Trophy awarded to the Kia NBA All-Star MVP further celebrates its namesake, with intricate details holding dual meanings, both for NBA All-Star and Bryant’s legendary career, which include the following: pic.twitter.com/kOXXywo8yX
— NBA (@NBA) February 3, 2022
Here are all the ways the trophy, which has a base and four levels, has been designed to honor Bryant:
The base has eight sides, which is a nod to Bryant’s jersey number. There are 18 stars on the outside of the base, which represent Bryant’s 18 All-Star selections. The base is two inches high, which is a tribute to him being named the MVP of the 2002 All-Star Game.
The first level has 24 stars, which represents each All-Star in the game, and is also a nod to Bryant’s other jersey number. The first level is seven inches high, which is a tribute to Bryant being named the MVP of the 2007 All-Star Game.
The second level has 10 stars, which represents the All-Star Game starters, and the jersey number Bryant wore with USA Basketball. Level 2 is nine inches high, which represents Bryant’s 2009 All-Star MVP trophy.
The third level has five stars to represent “the unity of an NBA team” as well as Bryant’s five NBA championships. Level three is 11 inches high, which, of course, represents Bryant’s 2011 All-Star MVP trophy.
The fourth level shaped like a star to represent “the star of stars,” as well as Bryant’s 2007-08 NBA MVP award. It’s two inches high, which represents Bryant’s two Bill Russell Awards for being named NBA Finals MVP in 2009 and 2010.
That’s an intense and deeply impressive amount of symbolism to put into a single trophy. The trophy is also beautiful and a definite upgrade over the old one, which was a basketball-shaped glass disc with various NBA designs.
The NBA also unveiled additional All-Star Game hardware. The trophies awarded to the Slam Dunk contest champion, the 3-Point Contest champion, the Skills Challenge champion and the Rising Stars MVP have also been redesigned, though without the deep symbolism of the All-Star MVP trophy.
In non-trophy news, the NBA also released the designs for their All-Star Game rings.
💍 NBA All-Star Game Rings: As is custom since 1983, NBA All-Star Game Rings are awarded to players in recognition of their selection to the game. pic.twitter.com/4ZVkybei82
— #NBAAllStar (@NBAAllStar) February 3, 2022
The All-Star Game is Feb. 20 with All-Star weekend festivities beginning Feb. 18.