Report: Kobe Bryant close to $2 million, one-game deal in Italy

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I’ll believe it when I see him walk on the court in another uniform, but the Kobe Bryant to Italy rumors remain the cockroach of rumors and will not go away.

But if it were to happen, this new one-game “Kobe night” rumor makes more sense.

That is the latest report out of Italy via Sportando.

Kobe Bryant, as reported by Il Resto del Carlino, is close to accepting the single game proposal made by Claudio Sabatini, owner of Virtus Bologna. The two parts are negotiating intensively in the last hour and a solution for the saga seems close to end. Kobe Bryant would land in Italy for four days and play one game in the ‘Kobe Night’. According to Sabatini there are already sponsors and networks ready to cover the event.

Sabatini offered to Bryant $2M for the single game.

I can get why Kobe does this — and it’s not just the cash. It’s one game and boosts his global brand, plus it’s in Italy where he spent eight years of his youth (while his father played professionally there).

Could the team recoup $2 million on one Kobe game? Maybe. That’s reportedly about what the Lakers pull in per game in gross revenue, and if Virtus can get sponsors and a special broadcast maybe it works. Plus, a lot of people will buy Virtus Kobe jerseys.

But I’ll believe it when I see it.