“I can’t say enough about the Spaniard,” Kobe said in front of the STAPLES Center crowd. “That guy is unbelievable and just a hell of a player. We wouldn’t have won it without him.”
Ten years later, Gasol said that he got a bit choked up while rewatching the late Bryant acknowledge him after the victory. Speaking to Broderick Turner of the L.A. Times, Gasol said, “With him being gone, I got really emotional.”
“I got emotional too, especially towards the end and hearing Kobe speak when he got the MVP trophy and how he acknowledged me,” Gasol recalled. “With him being gone, I got really emotional. It just really meant a lot to me.
“It’s one of those things with time that you learn to appreciate things and value things more, what you have gone through, what you have achieved, people you have had in your life, people you have shared special things with.”