Kobe Bryant‘s career will come to an end Wednesday, April 13, at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, when the Lakers end the season against the Utah Jazz. (Please basketball gods, let him remain healthy enough to play in that game and walk off the court on his terms.)
Kobe wants to go skiing. His job has kept him busy in the winter for the past couple decades, and it’s not like Bryant was going to go Vladimir Radmanovic and take off to go snowboarding during a break. But now that he will have the time, he wants to do it — and mix in some surfing and skydiving, he told former teammate Rick Fox and Jared Greenberg Wednesday on SiriusXM NBA Radio (audio clip below).
“I’m looking forward to skiing a little bit. I’ve never been skiing before. Maybe do a little surfing, maybe. Maybe a little skydiving.”
Also during the interview, Kobe also talked about declining the offer to be part of the 30 guys on the final list for Team USA this summer.
Bryant also talked about being moved by both how the fans treated him in his final game in his hometown of Philadelphia, and by the All-Star voting where he leads all vote getters and will start for the West.
Pelican’s Eric Gordon fractures finger, could miss four weeks
While the Pelicans wouldn’t give an official timetable, sources told The Advocate they expect Gordon to miss four weeks.
The injury happened in the third quarter.
This is a serious blow. The Pelicans are six points per 100 possessions better when he is on the court this season, with much of that improvement on the defensive end. Gordon is averaging 14.9 points and 2.7 assists per game, is shooting 37.7 percent from three. This likely means either Norris Cole or Jrue Holiday will become the starter with Tyreke Evans, and all three of them likely get more run now.
The Pelicans are in the early part of a seven-game homestand that is critical for them if they want to get back in the playoff picture in the West.
Kevin Garnett slaps Ryan Anderson in face, Anderson called for foul
He’s running up the court, the Pelican’s Ryan Anderson slides over close to him, and KG reaches out to smack Anderson in the head. The referee sees it and whistles Anderson for the foul.
The best part is the fans in the arena see the video and boo, the referees hear this and review the play with the help of Secaucus, and still keep the foul on Anderson, saying he got in KG’s way. Riiiight.
Anderson and the Pelicans had the last laugh, coming from 17 down to get the comfortable 114-99 win.
Three Takeaways from NBA Tuesday: Anthony Davis too much for Timberwolves
1) Anthony Davis drops 35 on Timberwolves, Pelicans get needed win. If the New Orleans Pelicans are going to make a push and get back in the playoff picture in the West, it’s going to happen now — Tuesday marked the start of a seven-game homestand. Anthony Davis understood the urgency. Davis put up 22 points in the first half when the Timberwolves had built a 17-point lead — without Davis this game would have been over by half. Davis did most of his damage with Kevin Garnett covering him — KG was a step slow to contest Davis’ jumper most of the night and paid for it. Then when Minnesota inevitably blew their lead (they have led by 17 or more nine times this season and lost five of those games) it was Davis who got to the line, scored a dozen in the final frame, and secured the Pelicans victory.
New Orleans is still four games back of Utah for the last playoff spot in the West, and they are going to have to hop Portland and Sacramento to get there, but it’s not impossible. The Pelicans’ schedule isn’t brutal in the second half, but they need to string together wins. And they are going to have to do it without Eric Gordon, who fractured his finger and is likely out a month.
2) Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant on the same team is just not fair. Oklahoma City is still trying to figure out what to do with the starting shooting guard slot — nobody seems to be consistent there. Against Denver Tuesday, when it was the four lock starters — Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant, Serge Ibaka, Steven Adams — and Andre Roberson (who started), the Pelicans were -9. Sub in Dion Waiters for Roberson and the Thunder were +10. But we all know the next night Waiters could be the issue. It will be interesting to see if the Thunder try to address this at the trade deadline.
What the Thunder have are Durant and Westbrook, who cover up a lot of those flaws, and are the reason OKC got a 110-104 win in the mile high altitude. Durant led the way with 30 points and 12 rebounds, while Westbrook added 27 — but he was the highlight factory for a night.
3) Giannis Antetokounmpo dunked on Hassan Whiteside. Westbrook was impressive, but the Greek Freak had the dunk of the night, powering through Dwyane Wade then throwing it down on arguably the best shot blocker in the game. And the Bucks got the 91-79 win.
Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook lead Thunder over Nuggets 110-104