On Kobe Bryant’s birthday, Anthony Davis and Lakers remember his influence

couldn’t sleep. He lay in his bed here at the Gran Destino Tower, tossing and turning, trying to leave behind a night when he made eight of 24 shots, didn’t assert himself like he could have and his team lost in his first playoff game as a Laker. As he fought the insomnia, he knew exactly who would have helped him.

Kobe Bryant.

“I thought about: What would he say to me in this moment if I could text him and ask for his advice?” Davis said. “‘What did you see on the floor?’ What would he say? And the only thing I came up with that I know he would say is, ‘Play harder. Leave it out on the floor. Did you play hard in Game 1? Did you leave it out on the floor in Game 1?’”

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