We’ve seen Kobe Bryant play heroically while dealing with injuries numerous times in the past, and though he’s still willing to push through the pain, The Black Mamba can no longer single-handedly carry the Los Angeles Lakers to victory (healthy or not.)
Bryant shook off a right shoulder injury Wednesday night, proceeding to briefly shoot with his left hand in a 96-80 road loss to the New Orleans Pelicans.
Afterwards, Kobe was more concerned about selling free agents on joining him in Hollywood.
Per the LA Times:
He left a game because of a sore right shoulder from a third-quarter dunk, unable to finish in the fourth after firing up two shots, both with his left hand, in a 96-80 loss Wednesday to the New Orleans Pelicans. […] The Lakers said there would be an MRI exam Thursday, but Bryant didn’t seem concerned. He was more interested in discussing his pitch to would-be free agents in July.
“It’s a pretty simple message. It’s the best organization in the world, best brands in the world,” he said, reluctant to name names because of the NBA’s tampering rules. “We win championships. That’s what we do. It would be much more than … Xs and O’s and style of play, things of that nature. There’s no place like winning in Los Angeles, man.”
Bryant also chafed mildly at some of the recent questioning of his overall health after he sat eight of the last 16 games for “rest” reasons. […] “We make a lot of it, but the reality is I’m doing some pretty phenomenal things in 30 minutes [a game],” adding with some colorful language that his body wasn’t that messed up. “I could play every game. It’s just really [Coach Byron Scott’s] call. I’m good either way.”