What Will Kobe Bryant’s 2014 Summer of Rehab Look Like?

It feels a little like deja vu—Kobe Bryant is once again spending the summer in rehab and training, looking toward a comeback by the start of the regular basketball season.

Except this time it's different.

There won’t be the same intense level of speculation as when he was on the mend from potentially career-ending Achilles surgery. There won’t be as many breathless articles, or timelines or tweets gone viral.

At least not about Bryant’s rehab and workouts. Perhaps in a larger team context.

Because this time he’ll be returning to action for a new head coach. As reported by the team’s official website on Wednesday, Mike D’Antoni has resigned.

Bryant came back to the Los Angeles Lakers last December, five months after the snap of a tendon heard around the world. He came back to a team beset by other injuries as well, and he was pressed into the role of point guard, because there simply wasn’t anyone else available to do the job.

Six games in, backing down Tony Allen of the Memphis Grizzlies, he turned and banged knees—an innocuous-looking move but it turned out to be the end of his 2013-14 comeback campaign.

The five-time NBA champion had fractured his knee. Specifically, the left lateral tibial plateau—code for that big bump at the top of the shin, right below the kneecap.

A projected six-week recovery stretched out longer, and longer still, until Bryant’s season ran out of road. And all he could do was watch from the bench, as the Purple and Gold piled up an astonishing 55 losses—the most in one season during their storied history.

Per Ramona Shelburne of ESPN Los Angeles, Bryant was cleared for running and shooting, and began an intense six-month training regimen on the morning of April 21:

He has been ramping up his activity level the last few weeks and was...

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