The Los Angeles Lakers have only 27 games remaining in the 2015-16 NBA season. Head coach Byron Scott has had the difficult task of balancing Kobe Bryant’s farewell tour with developing the team’s young players and things look as if they will change for the stretch run.
Kobe currently leads the Lakers in scoring and is among the team leaders in minutes per game at just over 29. However, that last number may begin to decrease.
According to Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News, Scott indicated that he will likely play Kobe slightly less minutes for the rest of the year:
Byron said he will likely play Kobe a "tad less" rest of season and play young guys more. But Byron declined to say how many min Kobe gets
— Mark Medina (@MarkG_Medina) February 17, 2016
Additionally, Scott will also look to get the young players more minutes in this final stretch according to Lakers Nation reporter Serena Winters:
Byron Scott says he expects the younger players to get a bit more playing time in this last 1/3 of the season.
— Serena Winters (@SerenaWinters) February 17, 2016
This is great news to hear as most fans have been calling for Scott to let the young prospects loose on the floor. An increase in minutes for players like Julius Randle and D’Angelo Russell has been the main focus, but this should also bode well for players like Tarik Black and Anthony Brown.
The Kobe farewell tour will surely continue, especially when he visits cities for the final time, but the young kids beginning to take the reins is something that needs to happen if the Lakers plan on improving next season.