1. Gasol struggled in the Lakers’ 113–103 loss to the Magic. So much so, in fact, that the tall Spaniard was benched in the final minutes of the game. Pau was disappointed. Kobe wasn’t empathetic.
Kobe went on to say, “We’re not going to lose him. That’s just not going to happen. I’ve been around him long enough. I know how to deal with him.”
You have to love Kobe. He’s a dick, but he’s a glorious dick. And like all glorious dicks, there is a boulder of truth at the center of his dickishness. Gasol has struggled with his new role in Mike D’Antoni’s fast-paced offense. The new system doesn’t afford Gasol many opportunities to post up (where he’s more comfortable), and should he want to begin getting those crunch-time minutes he’s been losing under D’Antoni, he’ll have to find a way to play more, in a word that the Lakers new coach likes to use, “dynamically.”
But Pau will find a way to do it. Kobe will make sure of that.