Gasol, Nadal supporting each other

Updated: June 4, 2010, 1:57 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

It's been a good few days for Spanish sports.

First, Rafael Nadal beat Nicolas Almagro on Wednesday to advance to the semifinals of the French Open. Then Pau Gasol had 23 points and 14 rebounds to help the Los Angeles Lakers down the Boston Celtics on Thursday in Game 1 of the NBA Finals.

And as it turns out, the two Spanish stars are supporting each other in their championship quests.

After L.A.'s 102-89 win, a reporter told Gasol that Nadal considers the Lakers big man an inspiration to Spanish players abroad. Gasol was asked if he watched Nadal.

"He's playing [Friday] in the final, so I'm keeping up with him," said Gasol, who had Nadal a step further along in the tournament. "If I wake up earlier [Friday], I'll be able to watch a little of it."

But Gasol did say that the two keep in regular contact.

"Yeah. We talk regularly," he said. "Yeah. It was his birthday [Thursday], so I wished him happy birthday and wished him good luck for [Friday] against [Jurgen] Melzer. So yeah, we talked."

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