L.A. Lakers: Pau Gasol’s Game Could Use a Dose of Kobe Bryant’s Heart

Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant spent an extra hour-and-a-half on the court shooting jumpers after losing Thursday night's game to the Miami Heat, 94-88.

I'm not sure if Bryant was trying to erase the foul taste of a 8-21 shooting night, or if he was showing the type of drive and determination that has made him a great player.

I do know Bryant should not have been alone.

After the way forward Pau Gasol was pushed around in the paint by the smaller Chris Bosh, Gasol should have found it imperative to join Bryant in Thursday's late-night shooting session.

But just like in the fourth quarter of the loss to Miami, Gasol was nowhere to be found.

Bryant should kick himself for some of the questionable shots and turnovers that he caused late in Thursday's game, but Gasol should similarly be blamed.  As the Lakers' second option, it's his responsibility to take some of the pressure off of Bryant.

Gasol did contribute 20 points but he was clearly outplayed in the battle with Bosh. Bosh also out-rebounded Gasol, nine to five.

Bryant is a special player because of his skill, his passion and his tremendous drive. His extra-hours shootaround should have been a call to arms for Gasol.

Gasol definitely has the talent and skill to stand out in the same manner as Bryant and his game has been enhanced while playing in the Lakers triangle.

But Bryant's hunger and drive has never rubbed off on Gasol, and he has not been able to discard his passive reputation.

Gasol has the talent of a top 10 player, but imagine how good he could be if he carried that attitude onto the court every night.

Imagine if Gasol could ever find the passion to match the depth of his game.

Gasol showed flashes of his versatility and brilliance against Miami, but when it came to a battle of heart, Gasol was humbled by the inspired play of Bosh.
Article Source: Bleacher Report - Los Angeles Lakers