Kobe Bryant says he's not one for farewell tours and rocking chairs. But by Bryant's own admission, the end of a legendary career could be coming sooner than later.
The Los Angeles Lakers are in New York to face the Knicks in what is potentially Bryant's last game at Madison Square Garden. At Saturday's shootaround, the future Hall of Famer addressed the media and admitted there are times when he questions whether he wants to continue playing basketball. And on the day in question, the answer was probably not (via ESPN.com):
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Bryant is averaging 16.2 points per game on 32.1 shooting this season, along with 3.8 rebounds and 2.6 assists. On Friday, he told reporters that he's not considering playing for any other teams -- "I'm a Laker for life," Bryant said -- and that he's not interested in the type of farewell tour that fellow Laker Kareem Abdul-Jabbar received during the 1988-89 season. As Bryant told Yahoo Sports/FOX Sports 1 NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski after the Lakers secured their first win of the season on Friday:
For his part, Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony said that he hopes Bryant remains with the Lakers for the rest of his career (via the New York Post):
At 37 years old and coming off of multiple injuries, Bryant acknowledged that recovering from a previous night's game is an all-day process for him. There's stretching and ice and massages and muscle stimulation and in-depth treatments where necessary. But, Bryant said, "If I wanted to keep playing, I could figure it out. Absolutely."