Kobe Bryant spoke to reporters before his Lakers faced the Bulls in Chicago on Monday, and the most newsworthy portion of the dialogue was regarding his status for the 2016 Olympics.
Bryant has struggled with major injuries since the end of last season, and is currently sidelined with a fractured bone in his knee that he hopes will be healed so he can return sometime in February.
But the miles are adding up, and the injuries along with the fact that Bryant is only under contract with the Lakers through the end of the 2016 season has him willing to rule himself out of playing for USA Basketball in the summer of 2016 more than two years in advance.
Kobe says he won’t play in the 2016 Olympics, but he might attend as a spectator to “see Pau win another silver medal”
— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) January 21, 2014
Classic Kobe, obviously, with the friendly jab at his teammate over the fact that Gasol and Spain typically are very good in international play, but have historically fallen short to Bryant’s USA squad.