DENVER — Kobe Bryant vowed he won’t go over the NBA’s technical foul limit (16) that will earn him a suspensions. But he’s surely toeing the line very closely.
The Lakers didn’t fret much over their 119-108 loss Monday to the Denver Nuggets at Pepsi Arena. After all, they had won eight of their last 11. But a day after chuckling over Bryant’s technical foul total, Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni suddenly sounded concerned after Bryant picked up his 14th for arguing over a non-call after attempting a half-court shot before halftime.
“He has to control that,” D’Antoni said. “He knows we can’t afford to lose him for a game.”
Bryant maintained he’s “not concerned” for various reasons. He predicts the NBA will rescind his latest technical because he said he had a “civil conversation” with an official before another one intervened and gave him the technical. Bryant also has a proven track record
The 16 technicals he earned in the 2010-11 season marked the only time he’s done so in his 17-year career. He came close in other seasons in 2001-02 (14), 2005-06 (15), 2006-07 (14), 2007-08 (15) and 2009-10 (14). Should the NBA uphold Bryant’s latest technical. he could only earn one more in the Lakers’ 24 remaining games.
How does Bryant manage to immediately shut off his emotions?
“I just don’t get them,” he said. “It’s that simple.”
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