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Kaepernick, Kobe sightings at the US Open

The Nike athletes were cheering on Naomi Osaka from her box in her second-round match

5:14 PMIf the suddenly quarterback-challenged Indianapolis Colts wanted to find another quarterback before the season starts, they could have scouted him out at the US Open on Thursday.

That’s where Colin Kaepernick spent his afternoon at Louis Armstrong Stadium, behind Kobe Bryant, to watch top-seeded Naomi Osaka in her second-round match against Magda Linette of Poland on Day 4 of the Grand Slam tournament.

Both Kaepernick and Bryant sat in Osaka’s box on the sunny side of Armstrong Stadium, loudly cheering on their fellow Nike athlete. When an image of Kaepernick, rocking a new, free-flowing hairstyle, was shown on the screen during the first set, he was met with mostly cheers from the crowd, with a few scattered boos.

While all three rep the same shoe company, Osaka said Thursday was the first time she had met Kaepernick, who attended the US Open with Eric Reid last year to watch a match between Venus and Serena Williams.

Osaka, who has known Bryant for some time, said she wanted “to play well” in front of her star-studded box.

“Last year compared to this year, there is no way Kobe would sit in my box,” Osaka said, smiling. “Kaepernick, too. It’s just funny who you run into in life.”

Former NBA player Kobe Bryant watches a Women’s Singles second round match between Naomi Osaka of Japan Magda Linette of Poland on day four of the 2019 US Open. Bryant has been promoting his new tennis-themed fantasy novel, ‘Legacy and the Queen.’

Al Bello/Getty Images

That’s what happens when you become a two-time Grand Slam champion, which Osaka accomplished by following her US Open win in New York last year with the Australian Open title in January.

Bryant, who is expected to appear in the ESPN booth on Thursday night during the Coco Gauff match, was in New York for an appearance earlier in the day for Net Generation.

“Everybody knows Kobe gives me real-life advice,” Osaka said. “He’s someone I look up to as an athlete and also as a person. I’m really grateful that I even have the opportunity to talk to him.”

Osaka, with her win on Thursday, will play the winner of the Thursday evening match between Gauff and Timea Babos.

Stephen Curry balled out at the Oakland Block Party

‘He told me he was coming, but it’s nothing like him actually being here with his wife and no security’

9:28 AMOAKLAND, Calif. — While the Golden State Warriors are moving to San Francisco, their star Stephen Curry still has his heart in Oakland.

Curry’s latest show of affection for the Warriors’ former home took place on Sunday when he and his wife, Ayesha, caused a stir by attending the Oakland Block Party hosted by rapper Mistah F.A.B., whose real name is Stanley Cox, at his urban clothing store, Dope Era. Cox said the Currys attended the event at Linden Park in North Oakland for “a couple hours” without security. The six-time All-Star also made a cameo appearance in one of the basketball games on the outdoor blacktop court, joining a team with Cox.

“Man, he is the greatest,” Cox told The Undefeated. “He told me he was coming, but it’s nothing like him actually being here with his wife and no security. They trusted me and knew that I’d never let as much as a fingernail chip come off his hand.”

The Warriors will be moving to the new Chase Center in San Francisco’s Mission Bay neighborhood next season and will play their first preseason game on Oct. 5 against the Los Angeles Lakers. Golden State had called Oracle Arena in Oakland home for the previous 47 seasons; Curry won three championships while starring for the Warriors at Oracle.

Curry’s show of support for Oakland was always front and center: The two-time league MVP celebrated his 10 years playing for the Warriors in “The Town” with a special Under Armour sneaker that read “Thank You Oakland” on the soles with a black and yellow Oakland colorway. Curry hosted a hip-hop concert at Oakland’s Fox Theater in December. Stephen and Ayesha Curry also unveiled a new family nonprofit foundation called Eat. Learn. Play. at Oakland’s Lake Merritt in July to address nutrition, education and recreation with youths.

Cox said it would be an “easy call” for the city of Oakland to build a statue in honor of Curry for everything he has done here on and off the court.

“Man, the kids couldn’t believe he was there. He means as much if not more to Oakland than what Michael Jordan meant to Chicago,” Cox said.