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Padres’ Manny Machado Shares Heart-Warming Story of Meeting Childhood Hero Kobe Bryant and Naming His Dog After the Legend

Manny Machado

San Diego Padres batsman Manny Machado treats the former Lakers star as his childhood hero. Machado memorizes his meeting with Bryant in an interview with ESPN’s Buster Olney.

Manny Machado met Kobe in 2018 while he was playing for the Los Angeles Dodgers. It was hours before game No 4 of the 2018 MLB World Series, Manny Machado was in the weight room at Dodger Stadium and prepping for the game against Boston Red Sox. But in an instant, Machado’s heartbeat was stopped when he saw Kobe Bryant nearby in the locker room in Dodgers Jersey.

Bryant attended the field to support the LA Dodgers. Machado felt nervous after watching his childhood idol. “I was nervous. I was like should I go take a picture or should I finish my rehab I’m getting ready for a game I’m like let me just finish right quick and you know try to get it done as fast as I could,” Machado shared his first meetup with the NBA star.

Later, Kobe walked into the gym while the 28-year-old batsman was on the ground. Machado got to see his childhood hero in his eyes, and it was one of the most exciting moments of his life. “Just mind blown man it was it was one of the most incredible moments of I would think of my entire life just you know finally just having him up close, and you know hearing him say okay I see you I see you, kid I see you working you know and uh you know I’ll never forget those words,” Manny recalled.

Manny Machado #13 of the San Diego Padres reacts to a call from umpire

Manny Machado #13 of the San Diego Padres reacts to a call from umpire. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

However, it was a very sad day for the baseball star when he heard Kobe’s death news. He always wants Kobe to remain in his heart. Later Machado named his dog’s name after the NBA legend. “He has a lot of energy like Kobe did, and you know he always brings that smile to your face every single day whenever you get home,” the Padres batsman conveyed about the new Kobe in his life. 

Although Manny Machado grew up in Miami, thousands of miles away from Kobe’s place. He grew up watching Kobe’s play with Los Angeles Lakers. It appears Kobe transcended sports and the time zones.

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