The Los Angeles Lakers have talked about shutting future Hall-of-Famer Kobe Bryant down for the season at some point later in the year if they're out of playoff contention. It makes sense to preserve the 19-year veteran's body, and resting their best player would help the Lakers tank to keep their top-five protected pick in the upcoming NBA Draft.
However, there was a lot of questions as to whether the ultra-competitive Bryant would be willing to sit out games. Kobe addressed those comments following LA's 109-102 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday night:
"I will do what they ask of me, but it's very, very hard for me to miss one game," Bryant said. "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. Seriously, I understand. 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 is averaging 22.6 points, 5.7 assists, and 5.6 rebounds in 34.6 minutes a game so far this season, but the Lakers are just 12-28.
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