Worst Possible Lakers’ News: Kobe Out Six Weeks

The fear over Kobe Bryant’s speedy return to the Lakers from his Achilles tendon rupture of last April was that by rushing back too soon, was he risking further injury, and that worst-case scenario has happened: Dr. Robert Klapper, head of orthopedics at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, said on LA sports talk radio today that the fracture of the lateral tibial plateau in Kobe’s left knee that has now been diagnosed, can be directly related to his earlier injury.

This injury will keep Kobe out of action for a minimum of six additional weeks.

With Steve Nash out indefinitely (also reported today to be at least another month), with Steve Blake out for another five weeks or so, and with Jordan Farmar taking longer than

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thought to heal and out at least another week (four or maybe five more games), Kobe had been pressed into point guard duty. With him out, that leaves Xavier Henry the only available body to play that position.

The Lakers had a horrible streak upon Kobe’s return, but were playing considerably better the last three games, adjusting to his game, and in particular his point guard game, and as he began rounding into basketball shape. Now, with him gone, with the point guard spot even more questionable, and with the

ongoing saga of the Pau Gasol-Mike D’Antoni feud, with growing discontent from some quality players (read Chris Kaman) who though now healthy are getting no playing time, the team is in real trouble.

Had Kobe been declared out through January due to his first injury, the Lakers would have accepted the challenge, and had the proper mental outlook going forward. But, to have

him come back, then make significant adjustments, and have him injured again and out for another lengthy period, could be devastating and make significant new adjustments even more difficult.

In his six games, Kobe averaged 13.8 points, 6.3 assists and 4.3 rebounds. Not stupendous numbers, but the mental aspect is as important as the lack of points, boards, and especially assists, and running the show.

In an earlier post, I referred to Darius Morris and wrote

that he had been doing well as a backup in Philadelphia. Well I was partially wrong, and despite decent numbers and what seemed like more than adequate play, the 76ers had a log jam at the position and released him. So, he is out there, and as a former Lakers’ point guard, the team should really consider bringing him back. There have been reports of Memphis having interest in signing him, so if the Lakers’ have any thoughts about him, they need to work fast.

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