October 18, 2008: hungry, late-prime #KB24 leads Lakers past his other ball club, FC Barcelona (Pau's old team). Kobe was asked before the 2012 Olympics why he chose the #10 jersey, to which he responded, "I wear the number #10 jersey in honor of the greatest athlete I have ever seen in my life - Lionel Messi." (Messi is a product of FC Barcelona) AP -- "Kobe Bryant scored 28 points and the Los Angeles Lakers beat FC Barcelona, Pau Gasol's old team, 108-104 on Saturday night in an exhibition game.
Gasol, who was born in Barcelona and lives there during the offseason, spent five years with the team he helped beat at Staples Center. He finished with 13 points and five rebounds in 19 minutes.
Pau's buddy Juan Carlos Navarro, the only member of FC Barcelona who played for Spain at the Beijing Olympics, scored 34 points in 41 minutes. As per the custom at games between teams from different countries, the Lakers and the Barcelona players exchanged gifts moments before the player introductions.
The U.S. Olympic team beat Spain 118-107 in the gold medal game despite 21 points from Gasol and 18 from Navarro. Bryant was on the U.S. team that beat them just 2 months before.
Gasol and Navarro also were teammates with the Memphis Grizzlies last season before Gasol was traded to the Lakers on Feb. 1 in a multiplayer deal that sent Kwame Brown to Memphis. Navarro is one of four players on this FC Barcelona squad with NBA experience, along with Andre Barrett, Daniel Santiago and Ersan Ilyasova.
The Lakers were the fourth NBA team FC Barcelona has played against, and the first on American soil. They lost to Denver by 34 points in the 1989 McDonald's Championship at Rome, lost to the Grizzlies by nine points in October 2003, and beat Philadelphia 104-99 in October 2006. They also played a team of NBA All-Stars to celebrate the 100th anniversary of their team, and lost."
🎶: "Spanish Delight" - Tonja Holma