Why Kobe Bryant’s Injury Changes Everything About Los Angeles Lakers’ Future

When Kobe Bryant went down against the Memphis Grizzlies with a knee injury, he did more than knock himself out of action for the next six weeks, as reported by the Los Angeles Lakers' official Twitter feed. 

He effectively changed the future for the Lake Show. 

Kobe doesn't have any magical powers that allow him to peer into what has yet to come and make alterations to his liking. Not that we know of, at least.

But he does have the unique ability to dictate the team's future actions, simply because he's such a prominent member of the organization. The injury—which you can see below—did exactly that. 

That seemingly innocent hyperextension (it wasn't innocent) against Tony Allen makes everything uncertain, both this season and after it. The Lakers can no longer assume they'll be a contending team in 2013-14, and their pitch to free agents won't be as strong next offseason. 

The injury just changes everything. 


From Buyers to Sellers

The Lakers actually figured to be pretty competitive this season, eventually earning the spot in the Western Conference playoffs that so many have just come to assume belongs to the team wearing purple and gold. 

Following the victory over the Grizzlies—the one in which Kobe hyperextended his knee, finished the game then later found out the true extent of the injury—L.A. moved to 12-13 on the season. It's not exactly a great record, but it's a solid mark since the team's best player had only just returned. 

At 12-13, the Lakers were still well out of the playoff picture. For now. 

They sat at No. 11 in the brutally difficult West, but they were still only 2.5 games behind the Denver Nuggets, who came in at No. 8, holding down the fort with the last of the coveted postseason berths. Surely a...

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