NBA player Ryan Anderson fought through tears today as he spoke publicly about his gf Gia Allemand's suicide ... saying her death has given him new purpose in his life.
Anderson -- who plays for the New Orleans Pelicans -- opened up during the team's media day, telling reporters he hadn't planned to talk about it, but then tearfully said ... "we have a huge plan to do something great in her name that's going to help a lot of people."
As we reported ... Gia, who was once on "The Bachelor" ... committed suicide in August -- just a few hours after she had a bitter fight with Anderson.
Anderson didn't spell it out, but it sounded like he was talking about Gia's rumored battle with depression. He got really choked up as he said ... "This is a topic that is not talked about enough."