Kobe Bryant Wise to ‘Scale Back’ Workouts as Lakers’ Regular Season Begins

The old adage that the NBA regular season is a marathon and not a sprint may be tired and overused, but for Kobe Bryant, it's a motto worth living by in 2013-14.

According to ESPNLosAngeles.com's Dave McMenamin, the Los Angeles Lakers star has wisely "scaled back" his workouts as part of his recovery from a ruptured Achilles tendon last spring. He's focusing on his flexibility this fall and opting to run on the anti-gravity treadmill ahead of the regular season, which tips off Tuesday night. 

While Kobe has made a name for himself as a cold-blooded competitor who rarely lets off the gas, at age 35, he knows as well as anyone that he and the Lakers have much more to lose than gain from rushing back to the floor for the first of 82 games.

The Black Mamba has long been an intelligent assassin on the court, but in this case, he's proving he can be patient as well.

We're talking about a player with 1,239 regular-season games and 220 more playoff battles under his belt. Not to mention the countless preseason contests and practices over the past 17 seasons. 

Sure, it'll never be easy for Kobe to exercise patience when the games count for something. After all, he's started all 82 regular-season games for the Lakers on four different occasions since 2002-03. But common sense tells us that the longer he waits and the closer to 100 percent he feels, the better he'll be and the lesser his chance for re-injury.

By coming back for opening night, Kobe would be doing his team a massive disservice. Instead, by scaling back, Kobe is doing the Lakers and himself a huge favor. 

Bryant understands better than anyone that championships aren't won in November or December. And Lakers fans know that L.A.'s slim hopes of lifting the Larry O'Brien Trophy at season's end hinge on Bryant's health.

Frankly, a postseason berth and even home-court ad...

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