Kobe Bryant may have to be carried away from the NBA on a stretcher before he’s ready to call it quits.
The legendary shooting guard of the Los Angeles Lakers recently spoke with Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports about a number of things. Among them, inevitably, was the topic of his impending retirement.
Everybody knows Bryant’s body is starting to fail him. He’s missed significant time in three out of his last four seasons due to various injuries, yet “Black Mamba” still can’t wrap his head around leaving the game he cherishes.
“…could this be the last [season]? Absolutely,” Bryant said, per Spears. “It’s tough to decide. It’s really tough to make those types of decisions. Players I have spoken to say, ‘Kobe you will know.’
“I’m making this very simple. Either I like playing the game and going through this process or I don’t…But I think that decision needs to be made after the season. It’s hard to make a decision like that before the season.”
Bryant told Spears his body is in great shape heading into the 2015-2016 season for the Lakers, noting specifically that “I feel very, very solid in my legs.”
He also made it clear that any decision he makes will not be based on money.
“I’ve never played for the money. It’s never moved me,” Bryant said. “Money can come and go. I have a perspective about finances. The family is fine. What is more money going to bring other than more money? I have my family, I have my health and we’re comfortable financially and that is a massive blessing.”
Heck, even if Bryant did decide to retire after the season, who’s to say he wouldn’t get Brett Favre syndrome and come back again after?
The guy just LOVES to play, and his competitive drive never stops.
This upcoming season should be fascinating. Los Angeles has an intriguing roster featuring some phenomenal young talent with D’Angelo Russell and Julius Randle as the future cornerstones. If Bryant can help mold this roster into a cohesive unit, then perhaps the Lakers will make a surprise run at the playoffs.
And if they do, then you know Bryant is going to want to continue helping the franchise grow into a championship contender, as his desire to win trumps everything else in his universe.
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