Kobe and MJ. Michael Jackson that is.

Kobe Bryant will be one of the honorary guests invited to Michael Jackson’s funeral at Staples Center tommorrow. At first I assumed it was just a courtesy invite, but it turns out Kobe and the King of Pop developed a good friendship over the years.

“I was one of the 65 million people that bought the Thriller album,” he said.

But their friendship goes a lot deeper than that.

“It’s and honor to be a part of it,” Bryant said. I think Michael was extremely misunderstood. Extremely misunderstood. He was so generous, extremely giving and caring. Aside from us talking about work and how he tried to prepare and train for things, he introduced to movies that I would never ever watch, like `American in Paris,’ or `Breakfast at Tiffany’s.’ Like I would never watch those. But he introduced those to me and opened up a whole other side of things. Appreciating Fred Astaire’s talent and things like that. Seeing how that relates to basketball. We used to have those conversations all the time. He’s just such a giver, and such a beautiful person.”

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