Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

Kobe Bryant Believes He Can Browbeat Pau Gasol Into Being Good Again

Illustration for article titled Kobe Bryant Believes He Can Browbeat Pau Gasol Into Being Good Again

Every morning, the fine folks at Sports Radio Interviews sift through the a.m. drive-time chatter to bring you the best interviews with coaches, players, and personalities across the sports landscape. Today: Some leaders lead by talking shit.


Kobe Bryant joined The Dan Patrick Show to talk about getting to 30,000 points, whether he remembers his first NBA basket, how nice it is to have players that came before him to provide inspiration, how many texts he received after he got to 30,000 points, what it means to him to be called an assassin by Mike Krzyzewski, if he thinks he can motivate Pau Gasol with words, on the slow start by the Lakers this year and whether he thinks he can ever get to the top of the NBA's all-time scoring list.

Whether he remembers his first basket in the NBA:
"I think I was in Boise, Idaho, for a preseason game against the Dallas Mavericks."

How nice it is to have players that came before him to provide inspiration:
"I think it's good to have inspiration before you no matter what field you're in. It's always good to have those people that inspire you. Michael (Jordan) was certainly that for me, as well as some other players that came before me, and I used them as inspiration and also motivation."

How many texts he received when he passed 30,000 points:
"About 100. (Host: Anybody that would surprise us?) I don't think so. I don't think there's any surprises. Most of the people know we are close, a close-knit family in the NBA. (Host: Michael (Jordan)?) No I didn't hear from Michael. (Host: President Obama?) No I didn't hear from President Obama."

On the burden that is on a scorer to produce every night:
"It's a mentality and I think it's something that starts at an early age. I don't think it's something where you can become a scorer. You have to have a certain DNA that comes along with it. It's almost like being a fighter pilot. Scorers who want to go out there and score every night are wired a little different."

What it means to him to be called an assassin by Mike Krzyzewski:
"It's a huge compliment. I take it as a compliment. It's a player that can put himself in a space where he feels like he can finish off a team or lead a team to have that similar personality of aggression and intensity."


Whether he feels like he can motivate Pau Gasol with words:
"It has worked successfully for two championships. I know him extremely, extremely well and I know what gets him going, I know what drives him. I know how to communicate with him either publicly or behind closed doors. It's a combination of both, and I think you kind of have to know your guys a little bit and kind of know what to say and when to tweak them."

When he thinks Steve Nash will be back:
"I don't know. Hopefully soon."

On the slow start to this season:
"We had a year in 2003 where we started out relatively slow and it took us a while to get going. This is a different situation. That team was together for several years. This team is all new. We've obviously had kind of a roller-coaster experience with coaches, system change and injuries. I think it's important that we remain patient, keep things in perspective, but at the same time have a sense of urgency that this needs to turn around today, it needs to happen now."


If he has Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's number in his sights:
"I don't even know what his number is. I know it's something that's absolutely crazy. (Host: He's got 38,000.) 38? Yeah I don't know about that. (Host: Michael is at 32,000. Should he be nervous?) It depends how many years I have left. I don't know. Last season was a tough season for me physically and it was the first time going into an offseason where I didn't know if I wanted to train as hard to prepare myself for the upcoming season. Just didn't know if I had it in me to do anymore after 16 years. Then one morning I woke up and the desire was there and off I went. It's tough when you get to 17 years or 18 years with no breaks. I haven't taken a break and had chance to let my mind rest, my body rest; this has been non-stop."

This post, written by Chris Fedor, appears courtesy of Sports Radio Interviews. For the complete highlights of the interview, as well as audio, click here.


More from Sports Radio Interviews
John Harbaugh thinks it would be ludicrous to eliminate kickoffs.
Eric Winston said the Chiefs made the right decision to play.
Nick Foles is still getting used to the speed of the NFL.