Mike Brown says in radio interview that Kobe Bryant made him a better coach

Mike Brown (you remember him, don’t you?) went on SiriusXM’s NBA show “Off the Dribble” Thursday and had a few things to say about his former employer and a few of his former players. Nothing earth-shattering, but it’s still fairly interesting stuff.

Among the highlights, Brown said of coaching Kobe Bryant: “I had a good time working with Kobe. I really felt like I learned a lot. He’s a guy that is extremely intelligent and extremely intense. In my opinion, when you’re around people like that, they only push you to get better and so being around him I really felt like he made me a better coach.”

Of coaching the 16-time NBA champions, Brown said: “I appreciate the opporutnity that the Buss family gave me and (general manager) MItch Kupchak gave me. Coaching the Lakers was an exciting, great time. It was a dream job for a lot of people, including myself. And it’s their team and so whenever, however they wanted to operate it, I was OK with. It’s not my decision to talk about the decision that they made. I just live by whatever decision they make.”

Of the Lakers’ ongoing struggles under new coach Mike D’Antoni, Brown said: “They’ve been struggling, obviously, of late, but I think they do have a nice team and coach D’Antoni has won many times before in the past. Especially when they get Steve Nash back and Pau (Gasol), I think obviously those are two big ingredients for that team to be on the upswing. As soon as they get those guys back on the hardwood, I think they’ll be heading in the right direction.”

Of what he expects next, Brown said; “It’s going to take Mike a little bit of time because he’s got his two starting bigs in Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol. So, now what he’s going to have to continue to try to mix and match and find minutes for Antawn Jamison. Do you play him at the power forward or do you try to play him at the small forward some? So, there are some things, I think, that coach D’Antoni is trying to figure out.”