Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant suffered a severe ankle sprain in the team’s loss to the Atlanta Hawks and he called it one of the worst injuries of his career. Even though the Lakers are battling for their playoff lives on a nightly basis, Bryant did not want to risk further injury by playing in the Lakers’ game on Sunday.
The Lakers will return to the court Monday night against the Phoenix Suns, and at this point Kobe Bryant should be considered a game time decision. After the Sunday night win over the Kings, Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni spoke to Dave McMenamin and he said that the decision to play on Monday will ultimately be left up to Bryant.
D’Antoni on Kobe vs. PHX: “It’s up to him. There’s no pressure on him.”
— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) March 18, 2013
Pau Gasol has been ruled out for the Lakers’ game versus the Suns and there isn’t really any reason as to why Bryant should suit up. The Lakers have shown that they can win games with Kobe on the bench and they have enough fire power without their star to beat the Suns.
Los Angeles needs a healthy Kobe Bryant down the stretch of the season and it should be cautious about playing him earlier than he should be.