|Posted by shawn cassidy on October 28, 2013 at 1:50 AM|
Kobe Bryant was recently ranked the 25th best player in the NBA by ESPN. Agree with that or not, Kobe is an old 35, and I think he's seen his last ring. Unless Kobe is willing to take less money, and I don't think he's willing to do that.
Los Angeles Lakers executive vice president of basketball operations Jim Buss said Friday that the team has started talks with Bryant’s representative on a contract extension for the five-time NBA champion and fully expects a new deal to be completed before the star guard can become a free agent on July 1, 2014.
“I want to put an end to any speculation that we would allow Kobe to become a free agent,” Buss told ESPNLosAngeles.com on Friday night. “That’s not going to happen. Kobe is a top priority for us. He’s a Laker legend and always will be. I don’t think we’re done winning championships with him yet.
“[Lakers general manager] Mitch Kupchak and [Bryant's agent] Rob Pelinka have been talking, but with him being hurt, it has slowed the process some. I don’t know when it’ll get done, but I have faith in Rob and Mitch to work things out.
During the summer rumors surfaced of James or Melo playing in LA, and in some reports they had both James, and Melo playing with Kobe. Is Kobe ready to become a second or third option? He's still an alpha dog, and I just don't see him taking a back seat. The Lakers had a chance to amnesty Kobe's 30 million that he's owed this year. But they elected to go with Artest.