Lakers saga continues, owner Jerry Buss comments on Kobe's future

Wow, that didn’t take long. Mere days after we had posted about Kobe Bryant and the Lakers being all smiles on the first day of training camp, Lakers owner Jerry Buss interviews with the Los Angeles Times and proceeds to throw gasoline on what was becoming a relatively slow-burning flame. Buss confirmed that the Lakers did consider some available trade options involving Kobe Bryant this past summer, and when the player is able to opt out in 2 seasons, or even before then if the Lakers don’t have significant success, he could once again entertain similar trade discussions. Not that any of his revelations are particularly groundbreaking or newsworthy, but the timing of the interview did peak our curiosity.

"I would certainly listen," Buss said, when asked if he would consider trade offers for Kobe. "At any time, I think you have to do that with anybody. It's just part of the game, to listen to somebody who has a dissatisfied player that you think is going to fit. You can't keep too many loyalties. You've got to look at it as a business. He looks at it the same way I look at it."

"I tend not to think in basketball terms that many years down the road because things change so dramatically, but he could test the waters at that point," Buss continued. "If he still is in that frame of mind, then hopefully we can do a sign-and-trade and get some comparable talent. I would like to think that we win between now and then so that it doesn't come up."

There really are only two explanations on why Buss would even do this type of interview, only days removed from Bryant showing up at Lakers training camp with a seemingly renewed commitment. Either Jerry Buss, who is known for his partying, was seriously inebriated while speaking with Mike Bresnahan of the Times, or, as we had speculated, while Bryant is putting on the façade of a satisfied employee, his underlying ultimatum of “get better, or else” is still very much in play.

Buss, for his part, is simply setting the media table and crafting public perception in preparation for the day that Kobe may act up and ask out of the Lakers once again. He can then throw up his hands and say, “What? Me?” Can’t wait, it should be a very emotionally up and down, highly interesting season in Lakerland.


Anonymous said...

Things sure got crazy after this post ran, with all the Kobe trade talk. This article by the Sporting News is probably where the real facts are:


Justin said...

I Think Kobe has had enough of LA and its inability to garner a decent team around him, Kobe is at his prime he is a winner and wants the tools to win NOW not in 4 years. I don’t think there is a way he stays in town unless the Lakers front office can somehow provide him with a team pronto, I was searching the net to see what bookies thought about it I only found stuff up on www.WagerWeb.com NBA Lines it list him at +150 to move so Bookies are giving him a 40% shot of being traded, IMO its more like a 50/50

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