Kobe Bryant will undergo season-ending surgery on Wednesday to repair the torn rotator cuff in his right shoulder. Here is the official statement from the Los Angeles Lakers:

Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant, who injured his right shoulder in last Wednesday night’s game against the Pelicans in New Orleans, was examined this morning by Dr. Neal ElAttrache of the Kerlan Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic.  Dr. ElAttrache confirmed an earlier diagnosis of a torn rotator cuff, and advised Bryant to have surgery to repair the shoulder.  Bryant has agreed, and surgery has been scheduled for Wednesday morning.  A timeline estimate for Bryant’s return will be issued following the surgery.

While it was expected, the news is not something the Lakers or its fans wanted to hear. This is the third major injury for Kobe in the last three seasons. With the latest injury, Kobe will have only played in 41 games over the last two seasons.

 


 

The news definitely puts the future of Kobe in question. While he is under contract next season, Kobe has always maintained that he will never stick around for money and would not continue playing if he could not compete at the standard he set for himself.

Many might not believe that, citing Kobe’s ego, but being the ultimate competitor he has shown throughout his career, I could not imagine Kobe being okay with playing at an average level but at the same time, I cannot imagine him going out because of an injury forcing him to.

While we are months away from hearing a definite answer regarding next year, expect Kobe to return for one last season. Although, it is important to remember that if the Lakers strike out in free agency, Kobe may not put his body on the line for a lottery bound team. Whether you agree with it or not, he has earned that right to make that decision.

 

About The Author

Editor-in-chief

Johnny Navarrette is the Editor-in-Chief of Game 7 Network. His past experience includes, but is not limited to, senior editor & lead writer at LakerNation.com, staff writer for the Drew League in the summer of 2014, and currently works for the OC Register's high school sports section, OC Varsity. He is a graduate of Cal State University, Fullerton, earning his B.A. in Communications.

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