Kobe Bryant isn’t going to talk about it. He gets a bit surly during the playoffs, the media questions are just another distraction in his way. And he doesn’t talk about chinks in the armor on the best of days.
But USA Basketball’s Jerry Colangelo told the New York Post that he doesn’t expect Kobe to play this summer at the FIBA World Championships in Turkey.
“He could very well have surgery after the playoffs,” Colangelo said.
Kobe has had what was described as tendonitis but clearly was a little more than that for a while with his knee. It was bothering him in the early rounds of the playoffs, but after having fluid drained out of it he went on a tear. That included dropping 30 on the Celtics in Game 1 of the NBA finals Thursday.
A lot of people around the Lakers did not expect Kobe to play the World Championships this summer. After three straight long seasons that have ended in the NBA finals, his body could use the rest.
Now it’s apparent he may need more than just rest.
LeBron James sat out the Cavs’ preseason game against the Sixers on Thursday night, but Cleveland still held the lead for all but the final 5.4 seconds. Then, Sixers rookie Scottie Wilbekin did this:
Wilbekin, who played college ball at Florida, has a chance to earn legitimate minutes for the Sixers this season as they try to find young talent on the cheap. This is a good start.
Eight days ago, Derrick Rose had surgery to repair a fractured orbital bone suffered in training camp. The Bulls said he would be ready to resume basketball activities in two weeks, and in the meantime will rejoin practice soon. That part is still on schedule — head coach Fred Hoiberg says Rose will be with the team when they return to Chicago on Monday following a two-game preseason road trip, but unless the swelling in his eye dies down, it could be a little longer before he can start practicing again.
Via K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune:
It’s not ideal, but since there’s no structural damage to Rose’s face, once he’s cleared to resume practicing, it’s just a matter of getting back into game shape before he can start playing in games. The team is still optimistic he’ll be able to play opening night against the Cavaliers on October 27.