Given the state of the Lakers (not good) and Boston Celtics (improving but not championship-caliber), everybody wanted to talk to Kobe Bryant about the past.
Before his final game in Boston, a 112-104 Lakers victory, he spent considerable time dwelling on the embarrassing loss to the Celtics in the 2008 NBA Finals.
"For the second half of my career, it's been the most important piece. When we lost in 2008, that turned [everything]," he said Wednesday, adding he kept telling himself, "I can't go through this [again]."
The Lakers beat Boston two years later in the Finals but Bryant would primarily remember 2008.