Byron Scott says he expects Kobe Bryant to play in season opener

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This has been expected by anyone who knew even the slightest thing about Kobe Bryant.

He’s been out for a couple weeks this preseason with a bruised calf, he hasn’t even been practicing, and that has led to questions about his readiness for opening night. But come on now, did you really think he’d sit out when the games mattered? Lakers’ coach Byron Scott confirmed he is expected to play, as reported by Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News.

Bryant has not completed any running drills since suffering his injury in the team’s loss on Oct. 13 against Sacramento against Las Vegas. The Lakers also listed Bryant as questionable to play in the season opener. But Scott remained adamant “there’s no doubt in my mind” that Bryant will return by then.

“Talking to him today, he said he’s gearing up for (the season opener). I said, ‘Good, that’s what I’m gearing up for as well,” Scott said. “It’ll take a whole lot to keep him out of that game.”

The Lakers are going to be cautious with Kobe all season, as they have been with this injury in the preseason. He will plenty of rest. The hope is he stays healthy all season, then when it ends he can make his decision about what he wants to do next.

But don’t expect one of those cautious rest days to be next Wednesday.