Kobe Bryant was back in the Staples Center on Thursday to meet with Pau Gasol, whose Bulls were in town to play the Lakers, and briefly talked with reporters about his plans post-surgery. Bryant went under the knife on Wednesday to have a torn rotator cuff in his right shoulder repaired. Here, via ESPN, is what he said when asked if he plans on being back on the court when the Lakers begin training camp in September:

“Yeah, that’s the plan,” Bryant said.

 

Bryant said his rehab over the next couple of months will involve “a lot of patience.”

 

“Sore, but it’s OK,” Bryant said of his shoulder.

 

Bryant said media opinion on whether he should return for a 20th season or retire wouldn’t affect his decision.

 

“I don’t really listen much to what people have to say to be honest with you,” Bryant said.

No doubt Bryant will give a comeback a go. The question, of course, with any older player, is whether his body is up for the challenge. Only time will tell.