Kobe Bryant Still Angry At Mike D’Antoni For Treatment Of Pau Gasol

Kobe Bryant

Kobe Bryant hasn’t let the Mike D’Antoni situation go because of how it changed his friend’s legacy.

When D’Antoni coached the Los Angeles Lakers, he benched Bryant’s then teammate Pau Gasol because he was ineffective in the triangle offence system that D’Antoni was attempting to implement at the time. The coaching style never ended up working for the Lakers and they have never recovered from the seasons under D’Antoni. 

Bryant thinks that his former coach hurt Gasol’s legacy. Reflecting back, Kobe doesn’t have nice things to say about the coaching system. 

“The fact that I’m not getting the ball in the post affects directly my aggressiveness,” he told Bill Plaschke of the LA Times in 2013. “When I’m not getting the ball where I want to, where I’m most effective, where I can bang guys and utilize my skill, that affects my aggressiveness and overall intensity.”

“I thought it was really silly,” Bryant said about Gasol’s role. “I felt bad for him going through that stuff. That’s why I defended him so much.”

D’Antoni wouldn’t or couldn’t work with Gasol’s skill set. Bryant says thinks that showed a lack of respect.   

Bryant and Gasol won two NBA Championships together. Kobe says “the city of LA didn’t really appreciate” Gasol because of how his time in Los Angeles ended. 

Gasol would sign with the Chicago Bulls, leaving Bryant with the struggling Lakers. 

The power forward joined the team in 2008 after Bryant had demanded the Lakers trade him. 

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