It must be apparent by now that Kobe Bryant loves himself lots of Manila, given the number of times the 5-time NBA Champion has returned in the country ever since his first visit more than a decade ago. This is his fourth time here. [Ed: Mikey swears by it. He was there at the Araneta when Kobe first visited Manila late in the 90s.]
Bryant made an effort to include Manila in his Nike Take Every Advantage Tour, a 5-city expedition that includes pit stops in Seoul, South Korea and various cities in China, among others.
During his day-long Manila tour last July 13, Kobe was able to hold a press conference in the morning, teach the kids of Gawad Kalinga the game of basketball at noon, and enjoy an exhibition game in front of thousands of Pinoy fans by nightfall. Ain’t nothin’ but hoops to fill up his day.
Fanboys that we are, we chronicled Kobe’s pit stop to Araneta Coliseum, where he played alongside the Smart Gilas and UAAP cagers in what would be a losing but heartwarmingly heroic effort. Check out our coverage of the event below and find out why Kobe is indeed da man:
WORDS BY MIKEY AGULTO
PHOTOS BY SANDRO PAREDES