Friday, January 16, 2015

Kobe Bryant will shut it down, if Lakers ask him to


Lakers guard Kobe Bryant told reporters that if the team ultimately decides to shut him down, he'll comply, Baxter Holmes of ESPN reports.

"I will do what they ask of me, but it's very, very hard for me to miss one game," Bryant said following Thursday's 109-102 loss to the Cavaliers. "I'm not going to be here much longer, so the games that I play, I want to make sure that I'm playing and enjoying it and appreciating it."
Lakers guard Kobe Bryant told reporters that if the team ultimately decides to shut him down...

Coach Byron Scott told reporters earlier in the week that the team might consider shutting Bryant down in March, if the Lakers are not in playoff contention. Los Angeles (12-28) is currently in last place in the Pacific Division, and sit 10 1/2 games behind Phoenix (23-18) for the eighth and final playoff spot.

"Seriously, I understand," Bryant said. "I understand. It's my responsibility to be ready every single night and when I step out there on the floor to give it my all. If they want to shut me down, if they decide to sit me out, I will do what's asked of me. It's that simple."

Bryant indicated that management wants him to "save these steps as much as possible. If my knees are a little sore, if my Achilles is tight ..."

"To try and get another year out of me," Bryant said. "Probably. You know me, man. If I say that's it, that's it."

Bryant handed out a career-high with 17 assists on Thursday. He's averaging 22.6 points, 5.7 assists and 1.4 steals in 34.6 minutes per contest this season. He's also shooting a career-low 37.2 percent from the floor and 29.6 percent from downtown through 34 games.