L.A. Lakers Right to Shrug off Mark Cuban’s Kobe Bryant Amnesty Talk

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban caused a huge stir by suggesting the Lakers should use their amnesty clause on Kobe Bryant.

Cuban has never been one to shy away from stating his thoughts on the Lakers organization, but it's his latest comments about the future of Bryant that have drawn a harsh response from the Lakers franchise.

The Mavericks owner—a knowledgeable observer of NBA finances—recently commented via ESPN Dallas Radio that he felt the Lakers' growing total salary and pending luxury tax meant they would be wise to use the amnesty clause on star guard Kobe Bryant.

“If you look at their payroll, even if Dwight (Howard) comes back, you’ve got to ask the question: Should they amnesty Kobe?”

That naturally drew a fierce response from the Lakers, who subsequently issued a statement addressing the Mavericks owner's suggestion (per ESPN).

We're aware of Mark Cuban's comments and feel they are inappropriate," Lakers spokesman John Black said. "As to the issue itself, we will not comment publicly on the amnesty issue as it relates to any of our players."

"I'll bet he did," was Bryant's chuckling response to the news.

However, as Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas.com notes, the very notion to amnesty Bryant isn't as crazy as it seems. In fact, given their current financial situation and the fact that Dwight Howard and Steve Nash are both commanding mega-dollar contracts, the amnesty clause really isn't that ridiculous after all.

It's just logical mathematics from Cuban.

MacMahon notes that the current total salary of the Lakers sits at around $100 million, which is likely to be at the same amount next year if Howard re-signs.

However, this is the last year before the dollar-for-dollar penalty for teams over the luxury tax limit comes in. That penalty would dock teams $1.50 per dollar that they...

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