Lakers Practice: Kobe Reevaluates “F” Grade, Nash Sits Out Practice

Lakers Practice: Kobe Reevaluates “F” Grade, Nash Sits Out Practice


The day after Kobe Bryant’s return, the Los Angeles Lakers were back at practice. Bryant participated in a light practice and was pleased with how his body reacted after his first game back. Last night, although Bryant was overwhelmingly excited to be back on the floor, he was overly critical with his subpar performance, grading himself with an “F.”

However, after watching film till 2 a.m. last night, Bryant has since modified his performance to a “D.” After a much anticipated return and a disappointing loss to the Toronto Raptors, Bryant compared his return to the preseason, which in a way makes sense since he was without a training camp.

“I’ve always had sucky preseasons. Always, its just a matter of building your legs, finding your rhythm.”

Last night, both Lakers head coach Mike D’Antoni and Lakers guard Nick Young discussed the tentativeness of the team and difficulty to find a rhythm, but Bryant does not expect there to be any problems with team chemistry.

“Chemistry will be fine, its not like they haven’t watched me play for 17 years. It’s not rocket science. It’s not like we were gangbusters before,” Bryant laughed at Monday’s practice referring to the Lakers 10-9 record before Bryant’s return. “Guys know how to play with me. It’ll be fine.”

Lakers center Pau Gasol says the biggest challenges with Bryant’s return have more to do with teammates finding and understanding their positioning as opposed to having chemistry issues. Gasol had another disappointing offensive performance against the Raptors, scoring just seven points in 25 minutes as a starter.

His average performance was met with boos from Lakers fans Sunday and, although he acknowledged that he heard them, he also said he doesn’t pay it much attention. The Lakers take on the Phoenix Suns Tuesday before traveling to Oklahoma City Friday, for their first game of their four-game road trip. It’s unclear, but seems unlikely that Steve Nash will be available, as he once again missed Lakers practice on Monday.

VIDEO: Pau Gasol On Kobe’s Return And Difficulty Of Players To Find Positioning

  • Zimmeredge

    that’s the problem for Kobe. he is still in pre season trying to find his rythm, his pace after 6 or 7 months without even making or taking a single dribble or shot.
    be patient it will be fine. i don’t understand people talking non sense bs about his return.

  • Jim213

    Good to hear that they know what they need to do. Which is positioning themselves better on the floor (with or without Kobe) to increase ball rotation though this may also depend on how quickly Kobe can adapt to this style with the coach playing Kobe at the 1 which will possibly affect the flow of things apart of the chemistry for now.

    Aside of that, Pau needs to focus on his game though with Kobe’s return it places most of the team’s critique on him. IMO, it’s important for the team to pickup their consistency given the many road games that will soon follow. (both sides of the floor)

    • e3bonz

      I think whenever Pau’s ankle sprain flares up he loses his lift and results in a missed shot. He played well against the Kings, but not the Raptors.

  • RealLakerFan

    Lakers fans booing Pau should be ashamed of themselves.

    • Ro

      I cringed when I heard it, absolutely pathetic.

    • Dragon7s

      Despite me yelling at my TV screen “Stop shooting Pau!!!”, I would never boo any Laker player, especially one that’s contributed to the Lakers over as many seasons as Pau has.

  • LakersHeatBeef

    Kobe is not a PG,hewill prove to be a much better player at SG/SF IMO.Also i liked how Kobe rebounded last night and his defense was fine,he just needs to play himself into better game shape tbh.Kobe is going do just great.Nash is done?If Nash is done as in retiring or missing the season,Lakers must get a true PG.

    • Dragon7s

      You’re right, Kobe isn’t a PG but he’s proved in the past that he can facilitate the offense in PG fashion (please see last seasons games after the All Star break up to and including the Achilles-injury game).
      The problem in the Raptors game was that he was just coming back, playing with players that he’s never played with in a game before and his timing was off, as should be expected.

      He and the team will be fine with him facilitating the offense…we (and they) just need to be patient until Kobe can get his sea legs back.

  • hookedonnews

    I’m not sure these guys do know how to play with Kobe. Maybe he should the one to adjust his game. It would probably be less disruptive to the team chemistry.

    • Dragon7s

      It shouldn’t be one or the other.
      The bottom line is that everyone is going to have to adjust and that includes the coaching staff.

      As MDA said the other day, “Kobe is a big piece..” and as such everyone is going to have to see what changes they need to make around such a big piece…and that includes Kobe.

      • hookedonnews

        It’s a lot easier for one player to adjust than for the whole team to change what’s been working. Kobe wouldn’t have to adjust that much. But, if you look at his comments, it’s clear that he expects the team to adjust to him. Just don’t want to see them lose a bunch of games trying to change the whole team dynamic.

        • Dragon7s

          Of course it’s easier for one player to adjust but the reality, whether it be the Lakers or any other team, adding a superstar player to the roster (or any player that will garner significant playing time) requires an adjustment by everyone on the team, from players to coaching staff.
          It’s just how it works and to deny that or simplify it as “Kobe must adjust” is idealistic at best.

          • hookedonnews

            I agree that it’s idealistic, and it’s not going to happen. I’m just saying it would be better for the team.