Shortly after returning from a torn Achilles’ tendon, Kobe Bryant once again went down with a knee injury. Derrick Rose was in a similar boat after tearing his meniscus earlier this season and the Chicago Bulls decided to shut him down for the rest of the year. That is not something that Bryant intends to do.
Kobe Bryant plans to have his injured left knee re-evaluated sometime in early February and has no intention of sitting out the rest of the season, no matter how bad things get for the Los Angeles Lakers in the standings.
“The only thing I can afford to consider is getting better, getting stronger,” Bryant said before the Lakers’ 107-104 win over the Boston Celtics on Friday. “I can’t allow myself to think any other way. I can only think about the next step. To do anything else becomes distracting if you allow yourself, if you give yourself wiggle room to not push yourself as hard as you possibly can. To think about sitting out and this, that and the other, your motivation is all wrong. I refuse to think that way.”
Knowing Kobe, no one probably expected him to come to terms with the situation and just take the rest of the year off, even though that would probably make the most sense. The Los Angeles Lakers sit among the bottom teams in the Western Conference with a 15-25 record and pretty much no hope of making any kind of a playoff push this season, even with Bryant in the lineup.