The persistent questioning regarding Kobe Bryant’s status for the Lakers’ season opener tonight against the Dallas Mavericks never actually involved the source.
That’s because Bryant hasn’t talked to reporters since last Tuesday, leaving it to Coach Mike Brown and teammates to provide insight on Bryant’s strained and bruised right foot. Until now.
The Lakers’ star took to his Facebook page, where he acknowledged his uncertainty on whether he’s healthy enough to suit up.
“Getting stronger,” Bryant wrote. “Not sure what it means for tomorrow night just yet but it’s much better than it was a week ago when I could barely walk. I hate not practicing. It drives me crazy! The training staff has been great. Mr. Laker, Gary Vitti, and the great Judy Seto (the first female trainer in the NBA) have been working their magic.”
Bryant’s injury stems from tripping over Sacramento forward Thomas Robinson while cutting into the lane in the Lakers’ exhibition loss Oct. 21 to the Kings. Bryant stayed in the game, finishing with 21 points on 6 of 12 shooting. But Bryant’s foot worsened afterwards. He seemed in a dour mood last Tuesday, conceding his foot felt “pretty sore.”
Since the injury, Bryant has missed five practices and two preseason games. During Monday’s session, Bryant received treatment on his foot on a trainer’s table placed on the side of the court so he could watch practice. He’d occasionally stood up to offer feedback. In between one drill, Bryant talked at length with Lakers Coach Mike Brown.
Bryant hasn’t missed more than nine games over a full season since the 2004-05 campaign.
“I will know more after shoot around tomorrow am,” Bryant said. “It’s still painful to raise up on my toes but, it’s strong. The decision to be made is whether the injury can heal while playing on it or if it will make it worse. Either way, I’m excited about the start of the season. Hopefully we can win a game or two finally .”
I’ll be at shootaround with the latest on Bryant’s foot injury. Be sure to visit our Lakers blog for daily updates.
Follow L.A. Daily News Lakers beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter.