Originally written on BlackSportsOnline  |  Last updated 10/21/14
A couple of years ago award-winning photographer Lori Shepler approached Pau Gasol with the idea of collaborating on a book project that gives an in-depth look into his life, with basketball being just a small piece of the puzzle. A few years later, the 16 chapter book titled Life Vida is here. As the title suggests, the book is written in English and Spanish. Pau reveals details about his private life, including moments with his family, his values, his philanthropy, his love of music, and much more. There are three forewords in the book. Each one written by somebody in Pau’s inner circle: former NBA coach Phil Jackson, five time NBA champion and teammate Kobe Bryant, and silver Olympic medalist, Juan Carlos Navarro. Each individual wrote a touching message about the great person Pau is and how he has impacted their lives. All touching in their own way, Kobe Bryant’s foreword titled “If I Could Choose My Brother,” was especially moving. He writes: “If I could choose my brother today, he would possess qualities that would make him a great leader: calm in the face of a storm; controlled in the throes of confusion. He would be level-headed in his actions and understanding in his judgment. Like me, he would play in the NBA. “If his organization ever let him down, he would hold his head up high. He would come to work every day, and continue to put in his best effort. He would not lash out or let himself become entangled in drama. He would not let it change him.” “Our bond would be fortified by a trust only brothers share.” “I would be proud of my brother; I’d tell him to write a great book. And I would be honored to write the foreward.” I think that was very cool of Kobe to do for Pau Gasol. Is it just me or has he become more personable over the years? You can’t deny his talent but for years he seemed so unapproachable and I think that’s why a lot of people disliked him.  Now I think he has become more likeable. Life Vida can be purchased here. All proceeds will benefit the Gasol foundation, a nonprofit organization founded by Pau and Marc Gasol to help children around the world lead healthier and more active lives.
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