Manila is a long, long way from the Staples Center.
Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant played an exhibition in the capital of the Phillippines earlier this week. Taking the court at the Araneta Coliseum, he put on a little show for a sold out crowd.
Stealing the ball on defense, Bryant jogged out in transition and threw down a dunk, hanging on to the rim a bit for dramatic effect. A nice finish, but something we can see in virtually any NBA game. The reaction from the crowd, however, was completely nuts.
The bench clears as the various players can barely hold back their excitement. The crowd cheering reached insane levels, eventually resulting in chants of "Kobe! Kobe! Kobe!"
Take a look at this video via alvindril on YouTube.
Here's another angle that really highlights the bench insanity via YouTube user KobeCamp2009.
AsianJournal.com reports that Bryant said he could feel the love.
"Manila is like a second home to me, my home away from home. I love the fans here who always welcomed me with open arms,” Kobe said.That is some Beatles-level popularity that Bryant enjoys. I think we have a new highlight in Bryant's busy summer, which has also included winning a $1,000 bet from Bow Wow and doing a 360-degree dunk at a camp.
Hat tip: BroBible.com.