Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Kobe Bryant's never one to like taking a back seat but right now he has to take to the sidelines while his teamates practice. Kobe's knee rehabilitation means that he's practicing as much as Allen Iverson...and were talking about Kobe Bryant. It is still uncertain to whether Kobe will play in the upcoming NBA Europe live preseason games where the Lakers face Minnesota in London on Monday and then travel to Barcelona to play Regal FC Barcelona on the 7th of October. Phil Jackson understands that many fans have paid the cost to see the boss (there's been a lot of ebay action too) but the Zen masters mind has been on ensuring his team is healthy. Jackson told the press, "Yes, you want the fans that have paid -- I was going to say dollars, but it's not dollars -- to have an opportunity to see remarkable players, but if he's not well enough to do so, obviously we won't do that."
Kobe does have some company on the injured list however with centre Andrew Bynum who will definitly not see action in Europe and right now is limited to flat foot shooting. The lack of Bynum's post presence opens up the floor for versatile forward Lamar Odom to take the four while Pau Gasol will lead at centre in London and his home country. With Ron joining them in the frontcourt this is still a stellar frontline that will be reassuring to the European fans. Bynums absence will also mean veteran, 37 year old, defensive dynamo Theo Ratliff and 58th pick, Rookie, big man Derrick Caracter will have more time on court. A testament to the Lakers depth in the middle. TIM DAVID HARVEY