Tennis Olympian Naomi Osaka, who has been an ARMY for years, finally met BTS’ SUGA at an NBA preseason game in Japan.
Osaka said during a 2019 press conference
for the Madrid Open, “I got into BIGBANG and 2NE1, especially CL. I don’t know the year, sort of like when ‘Crush’ and stuff came out. And then I just saw BTS doing a lot of related stuff, so I was like, ‘Who are these kids?’ Then I slowly started getting into them during the ‘I Need U’ era.”
That same year, she tweeted her love for the BTS track “Make It Right.” In 2020, she revealed that she ran a BTS fan account called “free hobi’s forehead.” She even listens to BTS while warming up for important matches, just as she did in her 2021 Olympic match against Marketa Vondrousova. Those in attendance noted Osaka had been playing “Dream Glow,” the 2019 BTS collaboration track with Charli XCX. She even attended their “Permission to Dance On Stage” concert in Los Angeles.
A daily dose of Asian America's essential stories, in under 5 minutes.
Get our collection of Asian America's most essential stories to your inbox daily for free.
Unsure? Check out our Newsletter Archive.
On Thursday, SUGA joined a Warriors practice session as a special guest at the NBA Japan Games. He watched the first match between the Golden States Warriors and Washington Wizards and met various players, including Warriors star point guard Stephen Curry
As SUGA sat courtside, so did Osaka. She later tweeted that she told him “Autumn Leaves” was a great song.
Fellow ARMY were quick to tweet out their support and praise of Osaka for living the ARMY dream.
SUGA is just the latest K-pop star to be attached to the Warriors. Back in April, GOT7’s Bambam
made history as the first K-pop artist to perform at an NBA halftime show for the Golden State Warriors vs. Los Angeles Lakers game. He also released the single “Wheels Up” as part of the Golden State Warriors’ new entertainment division.
In related news, it was announced that K-pop legend BoA would headline the halftime show during the second Japan game between the Warriors and Wizards on Oct. 2.