Kobe Bryant continues to be one of the most popular players in the NBA. Despite playing in only six games this season, Bryant leads all Western Conference backcourt players in All-Star votes leading many to wonder whether or not he will participate in this season’s All-Star game.
At Bryant’s age, and with his injury issues this season, many would prefer that Bryant sit out the game to rest up. Coach Mike D’Antoni, however, says the decision will fall to Bryant himself, as reported by Mark Medina:
That’s up to Kobe, the trainer and doctors, I don’t have anything against anything. That’s up to them.
Bryant himself implored fans to vote for some of the younger players who have played more this season. Whether or not this means Bryant wouldn’t suit up, nobody quite knows, but this game is about the fans and Kobe has a lot.
With Bryant possibly returning later this month, it is conceivable that he could be healthy enough to play the game if he so chooses. There is always the possibility that Bryant could be surpassed in votes, but that is highly unlikely as he holds a nearly 200,000 vote advantage over Stephen Curry and Chris Paul.
At this point in his career, Bryant doesn’t need to appear in All-Star games, and even if he suits up, he is unlikely to play a lot of minutes. With his comments, it seems that he is open to letting the young guys have their moment and that is probably best for both Bryant and the Lakers.
VIDEO: Kobe Bryant Suggests Fans Vote For Younger Players For All-Star Game