After Kobe Bryant recently announced he will retire at the end of the 2015-16 Los Angeles Lakers season, the farewell tour officially began in his hometown.
Prior to the game, the Philadelphia 76ers had a special ceremony for Kobe, which included a video and Lower Merion High School jersey. Despite the boos throughout his career, the fans showed their appreciation for the five-time champion.
While Kobe opened the game by making 3-of-4 threes, he went 7-for-26 from the field overall as the Lakers lost 103-91. Following another loss, head coach Byron Scott was asked about his superstar’s shooting performance via Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times:
Byron on Kobe's heavy volume of shots…and misses: "There's going to be games like that where you're just going to live and die with it."
— Mike Bresnahan (@Mike_Bresnahan) December 2, 2015
Heading into the new season, there were expectations the Lakers would be much improved with more talent. However, Kobe has struggled in his 20th season and is on pace for his worst shooting percentage of his career.
With Kobe leading the team in field goal attempts, he has been criticized for not accepting a lesser role for the young core of D’Angelo Russell, Julius Randle and Jordan Clarkson. At this stage of his career, Kobe is revealing the physical limitations he is experiencing and is trying to get back in rhythm.
For the third consecutive season, the Lakers find themselves at the bottom of the standings. It does not get any easier for Los Angeles as they are on the longest road trip of the season. After losing to the winless 76ers, the Lakers will play the Washington Wizards in a back-to-back situation and it is unclear if Kobe will play.