Her friends call her “Kim Bryant” in reference to her die-hard loyalty to NBA all-star Kobe Bryant.
Kimberly De Guzman’s dream of meeting her long-time hardcourt idol came true when she got to spend a few hours with the basketball superstar on a mobile phone company’s promotional event in Manila last Monday.
De Guzman, who hails from Tacloban City but has been residing in Cebu City for the past five years, said she felt “blessed” after giving Bryant a tight embrace and got to exchange a few words with him.
“I just told him I love you and asked if I could hug him,” she excitedly recalled to Cebu Daily News. “We also did the Mamba Handshake,” she added.
After the meet and greet, she also got the chance to accompany Bryant in another promotional event at the Mall of Asia.
De Guzman earned the rare chance to have “all-access” with Bryant after she participated and won the Social Media Mamba promo for a smartphone brand alongside former Letran College basketball player Kevin Louie Alas.
“He was very handsome. I was so nervous all that time,” said De Guzman. Her entry in the promo consisted of a tweet in Twitter which answered the question, “Why are you Kobe’s number one fan?” with the hashtag “GoBeKobe.”
De Guzman also posted a photo collage in Instagram that showed the things she’s done for idolizing Bryant.
Among those are dyeing her hair purple and gold, the Los Angeles Laker’s team colors, during her college graduation rites and coded software programs such as a Bryant-inspired Hangman game and online calculator.
Aside from that, De Guzman also collects Bryant shirts, caps and signature shoes.
“I’ve dedicated almost half of my life admiring this ‘beast’ on the court. He is the reason why I came to love the game of basketball and now I cannot imagine life without the NBA and Kobe,” stated De Guzman’s post in Instagram.