Kobe Bryant had one of his “better” games of the season in a win over the Detroit Pistons on Sunday night, nearly racking up a triple-double with 17 points, nine assists and eight rebounds in the Los Angeles Lakers’ second win of the season.
Of course, while Bryant racking up nine assists was great, he still shot just 6-of-19 from the field, turned the ball over four times and played a whopping 36 minutes. This after he missed a few games not long ago with back issues.
So is it any surprise that Bryant was complaining about aching body parts after the game? Of course not:
Kobe: "I’m barely standing up. My back & my legs, it’s killing me.” He added, "I'm not looking forward to walking to the car. Seriously."
— Baxter Holmes (@BaxterHolmes) November 16, 2015
It’s also no surprise that Bryant won’t be playing in the Lakers’ road tilt against the Phoenix Suns on Monday evening. Lakers head coach Byron Scott apparently had no issue playing Kobe big minutes against the Pistons because the plan was to sit him for the Suns game, but playing Bryant huge minutes while also having him dominate the ball so much is asking for trouble in terms of his health.
At this point, it’s clear that Bryant’s body is betraying him. He’s coming off three season-ending injuries. He doesn’t get to the basket much anymore. He lacks lift on his jumpers. Father Time is undefeated, and based on what we’re seeing and what Kobe’s saying, it sure seems like he’ll be done after this season. The question is if he’ll make it through the year.