Kobe Bryant

Kobe Bryant on Dwight Howard leaving Lakers: ‘Honestly, man, I don’t really give a s—‘


The Lakers held their annual media day to open training camp on Saturday, and before the team could move forward to the business of the upcoming season, a question forced Kobe Bryant to take one final look at the one that just passed.

Asked about his surprise level when Dwight Howard chose to leave L.A. for Houston in free agency, Bryant was clearly ready to move on.

“Honestly, man, I don’t really give a s—,” he told reporters. “If he would have come back, it would have been great. If he didn’t … It is what it is.”

That sums up pretty succinctly how most Lakers fans feel about Howard’s departure, as well.

Despite losing out on one of the most talented free agents on the market, along with questions of health and how all the new pieces will fit together, Bryant isn’t ready to back away from his annual goal of winning a title just yet.

“Our expectations are always the same going into every single season: It’s to improve every day with the goal in mind of winning a championship,” Bryant said, via Dave McMenamin of ESPN Los Angeles. “It doesn’t matter what anybody else is saying, that’s the goal that we have.”

As for what the others are saying — namely, those that are predicting the Lakers will finish the year without making the playoffs — Bryant would like to remind you about how the predictions for his team turned out last season.

“Those people have been wrong before,” Bryant said, in an interview with Time Warner Cable. “They picked us to win a championship last year, and they were dead-ass wrong about that.”

Hezonja throws down one-handed dunk in preseason debut

Orlando Magic Introduce 2015 NBA Draft Picks
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Mario Hezonja, the No. 5 pick in this year’s draft, has never lacked for confidence. The Croatian guard made his pro debut in the Magic’s preseason game against the Hornets on Saturday and did this:

Between Hezonja, Elfrid Payton, Victor Oladipo and Aaron Gordon, the Magic have a nucleus of young players that has the potential to be a lot of fun. Even if they’re still a few years away from contending, they’re definitely going to be a League Pass favorite this year.

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist suffers dislocated shoulder in preseason game

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Solomon Hill
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Preseason is only just getting underway and there’s already a potentially serious injury to report. In the game between the Hornets and Magic on Saturday night, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was taken to the locker room after suffering a right shoulder injury. The Hornets announced that he was then taken to an Orlando-area hospital for follow-up x-rays:

A few hours after the game, the Hornets announced that Kidd-Gilchrist has a dislocated shoulder:

Depending on the severity of the injury, he could miss a few weeks or a few months. Hopefully, it’s the shorter end of that timeline. We should know more on Sunday.