The biggest concern for the Los Angeles Lakers heading into the upcoming NBA season is the health of superstar Kobe Bryant. Although Kobe is making an incredible from Achilles surgery, Kobe’s future is uncertain with no contract extension talks being conducted with the Lakers according to GM Mitch Kupchak as of Sept. 25 via Serena Winters of LakersNation.com:
"There have been no contract extension talks [with Kobe]" - Mitch Kupchak
At 35 years old, Kobe isn’t getting any younger and chances are he won’t be the same player during the 2013-14 NBA season. Even though Kobe had a solid year last season and proved he still had something left in the tank, an Achilles injury can be a career-ender for NBA players.
In the past, no injury has been able to hold Kobe down for long as the veteran has always figured out a way to stay on the floor while also being productive. This season may be the end of his play at an elite level, but that still remains to be seen.
As for contract talks, it has become clear that the franchise and the superstar are currently on the same page. Kobe intends to retire as a Laker and the team has no intention of letting him walk in free agency next summer.
A deal will almost certainly get done, but the real question is whether or not extending Kobe to a lucrative short-term deal will impact the team’s plan to bring in big-name free agents in July. Talk of Kobe taking a considerable pay cut has circulated, but there’s no telling how it will all go down with a full season left to play.
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