Shutting Down Kobe Bryant for Rest of Season Will Be Blessing in Disguise

Kobe Bryant’s absence for the remainder of the season is a huge benefit for the Los Angeles Lakers.

Bryant, who will be 36 years old by the time next season starts, fractured his knee in mid-December, and the injury was too severe for the former league MVP to return in 2013-14. Sam Amick of USA Today Sports relayed the thoughts of Lakers trainer Gary Vitti on the topic:

With Kobe's injury still not healed, the amount of time he'd need to rehab and be ready to play, and the amount of time remaining in the season, we've simply run out of time for him to return. However, Kobe will have the entire offseason to heal, rehab and prepare, and we look forward to him being 100% for the start of next season.

Bryant will get an opportunity to rest a body that has been through hell going back to the end of the 2012-13 campaign.


Kobe Bryant: At Risk of Injury

It’s only natural for Bryant’s health issues to make one wonder if his body will continue to fail him going forward.

The four-time All-Star Game MVP ruptured his Achilles last season, and many wondered whether Bryant would ever retake to the court at the peak of his powers.

The five-time champion returned in December, but he looked nothing like the Hall of Fame 2-guard fans have become accustomed to seeing (the video below serves as a reminder for those that require it).

The comeback lasted all of six games, and then Bryant hurt his knee.

The Achilles tear robbed Bryant of some of his explosiveness and quickness. Consequently, the two-time Finals MVP looked out of sync. It was as if the games were unfolding a bit too quickly for him in his 29.5 minutes per game.

Bryant simply hadn’t completely recovered from the rupture, and that might have contributed to injuring his knee. Grantland’s Zach Lowe explains:

It has been fashionable to...

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