Can your family sell the things you leave behind when you move out? Kobe Bryant’s mother thinks so, but the NBA superstar disagrees and now the two are locked in a high-profile, high-stakes court battle over some of his memorabilia.
According to court papers filed Thursday in U.S. District Court, Goldin Auctions of Berlin, New Jersey, struck a deal with Pamela Bryant to sell some of her son’s items from his early days with the Los Angeles Lakers as well as his high school career in Pennsylvania. he long long list includes the star's jerseys, practice gear, and sweatsuits from Lower Merion High School, Kobe's varsity letters, a trophy for outstanding player he received in 1995 at an Addidas ABCD basketball camp, a signed basketball from the 2000 NBA Championship game, as well as rings from his 1996 Pennsylvania high schoool championship game, one from the NBA All-Star game, and a pair of rings that the Lakers had made for his parents to mark the 2000 NBA championship game.
A source close the legendary player, however, told "omg! Insider" co-anchor Kevin Frazier that the real reason behind the auction is a family dispute over a second home that his mother wants to purchase. "Bryant has given his parent millions of dollars in financial assistance throughout his 17-year career. They decided to sell his high school memorabillia without his consent to purchase an additional home." According to the source, when Bryant balked at buying a larger home then initially agreed upon, his mother struck the deal to sell his memorabilia. ESPN is reporting that the 34-year-old offered his mother $250,000 towards the purchase of a home in Nevada but she refused, instead asking for $450,000.
Bryant thought the matter was on hold until he discovered that his personal items were hours away from being auctioned off. At that point his attorneys sent a cease and desist letter to the auction company, requesting that the sale be called off and the items returned to Bryant. Goldin's lawyers claim that the goods belonged to Pamela Bryant, that Kobe had no interest in them, and that all of the memorabilia was moved to a storage facility in New Jersey.
Another possible reason Pamela might be taking this battle to court with her son is because the owner of the auction house, Kenneth Goldin, has already giver her a cash advance of $450,000 as well as put money into advertising for the auction.
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