2010 NBA Preseason: Kobe Bryant at Only 60%!! Should Laker Fans Be Concerned?

During the Los Angeles Lakers visit this preseason to London, England, Kobe Bryant was quoted as saying he is only at “60 percent” on coming back from his summer knee surgery.

Should Laker fans everywhere be concerned or will he get back all the way?

This is the biggest question for the 2010-2011 season. Forget Andrew Bynum. Forget if this will really be coach Phil Jackson’s final run. Forget how the new supporting cast will integrate.

No, the only real question and the one Laker fans should concern themselves with is that Kobe comes all the way back from his surgery.

When does it matter?

It doesn’t for the regular season. The Lakers will make the playoffs if they slept their way through all the games.

It doesn’t to get to the NBA Finals. The Lakers have too many weapons and can cover for any unhealthy players.

But it does matter in the NBA Finals. 

A healthy Kobe Bryant is the difference in winning the title or not. Period. Say what you want about him being the best or LeBron James having that distinction. It doesn't matter. Basketball is a team game and the best team wins. End of story.

And, the Lakers have the best players, in the right positions. But, they’ve always had the best one on one player in the world.

Why does recovering to 100 percent matter for Kobe and a three-peat?

Because the difference in Kobe coming back and coming back fully is the difference in him going from true superstar to a great All-Star. And, if he slips to only great All-star status, you can throw all bets out the window on the Lakers repeating.

A healthy Kobe transcends the game. He elevates his team to greatness. But if the knee still hurts, if his lift is limited or reduced, that changes everything.

Why? Because Kobe is the quintessential game changer. He breaks down opponents and puts...

About the Author