Building a Greater Los Angeles Blog

Guest blog post by 13-yr old, Troy Guglielmo. His father placed the winning bid on our Lakers ball boy experience package.

 On April 3rd, 2012, I got to the chance to experience being the ball boy for the Lakers. When my dad told me I was going to be the Lakers ball boy on my 13thbirthday, I was so excited! I am a Lakers fan who loves watching them play and am actually a basketball player myself.  I could not believe I had the opportunity to go on the court, rebound for the world famous Lakers and meet the players. I could hardly wait on my ride over to the game. When I arrived along with my family, I was greeted by some of the staff, they were really kind. They showed me the way in and gave me a complimentary “I LOVE THE LAKERS” t-shirt. I also got two tickets to watch the game with my dad and a media pass that I could use to get about anywhere. I thought about all the possibilities but then was showed the way to the court.  
When I got down, I was greeted by the coaches and ball boy and was instructed what to do. I started rebounding for the players and then would pass it off to either them or the coaches. Once, I went up for a rebound and got all tripped up and then eventually plopped on the floor. So, the coaches said I got fouled and had to go to the line to shoot a free throw. I went up to the line and shot the ball… I was waiting to see what would happen. THUD! I had not even hit the hoop on my first ever shot in the Staples center. I turned to see my dad recording it and laughing gleefully, “AIRBALL,” he said. I then went back to rebounding for the players and listening to the instructors. After about another hour and a half or so, the music started playing and the Lakers came through the tunnel. I got to give them high-5’s and then started rebounding for some Lakers greats such as Kobe, Pau and Metta. After warming up, we put the balls away and awaited the National Anthem to play. While the song was playing, I really took in the magnificence of the Staples Center. When the song ended, I was escorted off the court and up to my seats.
The basketball game was against the New Jersey Nets and was action-packed the whole time. During the middle of the 4th quarter I went down and sat in the 2nd row for the remainder of the game. There was 10 seconds to go and the Lakers were only up by one and they had to get a shot off. So with 3 seconds left on the shot clock, Kobe shot a fade-away three which probably went in and out three times and then finally went in! The crowd went wild and the Lakers went onto winning the game.
After, I was escorted outside the locker room to get pictures and autographs from the Lakers. I had a great time being the ball boy at the game for the Lakers. From rebounding for Pau Gasol to shooting with Kobe and then getting blocked by Metta World Peace, which was hysterical, I had a moment with the Lakers that I would always cherish. The staff was kind yet funny and the whole experience was amazing. Thanks to Habitat for Humanity of GreaterLos Angeles, I had the best experience of my life.
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About Erin Rank
Erin Rank is the CEO of Habitat for Humanity L.A. Please see more of her posts on this blog as well as google+.

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