When talking about the greatest duos in NBA history, it is Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O'Neal who usually get mentioned -- and for good reason.
But Kobe also achieved great success with multiple-time All-Star big man Pau Gasol, whom he won back-to-back titles with in 2009 and 2010.
For Lakers fans, it was a fun time seeing the two mesh on the court and, unlike with him and Shaq, the two actually got along on a personal level as well.
So, it's no surprise that after Kobe's death in 2020, Gasol was one of the first to speak up and express his thoughts and emotions.
And while it's been over a year since the accident, Pau did recently share some words about Bryant again, speaking on what it was like to be teammates with the guy for so many years.
“There’s not many other individuals that were more determined than Kobe was. His obsessiveness to be the best, his work ethic to be the best. He was determined more than anyone to really maximize his journey. And he showed that as a basketball player. He showed that after hanging it up, he saw no limits to his potential was kind of unparalleled.
He was just a great example, so much knowledge, so much inspiration. But he left us this great legacy, just a one-of-a-kind individual.”
The thing about Pau and Kobe is that they weren't just teammates -- they were friends, and that friendship extended well beyond when Bryant retired from the game in 2016.
Of course, Gasol would know more than anyone all the wisdom and values Bryant held, but Kobe was not shy about sharing his philosophies with the world.
Today, millions of fans still remember his words and admire the amazing example of hard work and determination he left behind.