Kobe Bryant’s fans are passionate, blindingly loyal, defend their guy like a pit bull — and they are everywhere.
Including the Philippines.
Dwight Howard and the Rockets were in the Philippines for the first NBA game ever there — a preseason game in Manila that wrapped up before you woke up Thursday. By the way the Rockets jumped out to a 12-0 lead in and never trailed in beating the Indiana Pacers (the interesting on court note from that game is you have to wonder if Patrick Beverly is beating out Jeremy Lin as the starting point guard spot for Houston).
Anyway, the Mall of Asia arena had a bunch of Kobe fans in it — I wasn’t kidding, they are everywhere — and they let Howard hear it, reports interaksyon.com:
During the Rockets’ preseason game on Thursday night against the Indiana Pacers, Howard was on the receiving end of some boos from the crowd at the Mall of Asia Arena.
There were also scattered chants of “Kobe! Kobe!” in reference to Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant, with whom Howard had a clash of personality during his one season stint in Los Angeles.
In the third quarter the crowd even gave Howard a Bronx cheer when he made a free throw. Houston fans may be doing that by Christmas.
Kobe has made multiple trips to the Philippines in the past on his summer Nike tours — the man has worked hard to build up his fan base in Asia. Those fans are like stateside Kobe fans in their passion and loyalty to the man — things Howard did not display in LA. Therefore, in the black and white world of Kobe fans, he is evil. Sad but true.
Howard should get used to this, he will get booed in Los Angeles this season, as well as some other stops as he has annoyed people everywhere with his two years of drama.
But the Philippines are the same as everywhere in another sense — win a title and Howard will shut up the boos and come back a conquering hero.
Just how Kobe turned those his boos around.