With the Los Angeles Lakers’ season opener against the Houston Rockets on October 28, the spotlight has been on Kobe Bryant’s return. After two consecutive season-ending injuries, Bryant performed well in the preseason, averaging 17.4 points and 4.4 assists in six games.
While Kobe continues to adjust his game and prepare for his 19th season, negativity surrounds the five-time champion. In a recent interview with Ken Berger of CBS Sports, Chris Paul of the Los Angeles Clippers talked about the final chapter of Kobe’s career:
“Kob is one of those people that you just never count him out,” Paul said. “I’m a huge fan of his. It’s just funny; you hear people say he’s on the downside. Kob is Kob. He’s a different breed. He just feeds off of that. When you have that type of drive and desire, it’s never over.”
Before the start of the 2014-15 NBA season, ESPN ranked Kobe the 40th best player in the league and also released an article on how he is responsible for the Lakers’ downfall. In response, Kobe called them “a bunch of idiots” and numerous players and analysts have come to his defense.
At the age of 36 and coming off an Achilles rupture, Kobe has accepted that his body could fail him at any time. Despite the low expectations for his team this season, the five-time champion is enjoying the process of trying to build something in the final chapter of his future Hall of Fame career.[divide]
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