Kobe Bryant stayed on the ground clutching his left leg, an ominous sign for a Lakers season rife with championship aspirations spiraling further and further into a bad $100 million investment. It turns out the news became as bad as what the image suggested. Bryant had just suffered a torn left Achilles tendon, shattering any hopes of the Lakers making a deep playoff run and raising too many uncertainties for the distant future.
With the Lakers opening training camp this past week, some questions don’t have much clarity. When will Bryant return? How will his game look? How far can Bryant carry the Lakers? Bryant has struck a balance between staying patient with his recovery without shattering his optimism he can collect his sixth NBA championship. Still, the uncertainty looms.
But based on Bryant’s past history in overcoming past injuries, NBA2K14 has unleashed a trailer that suggests the Lakers star will still pull the miraculous. The footage above shows Bryant hitting game winners through double teams without much time on the clock. It features Bryant exploding to the rim and finishing with high-light worthy plays. The trailer demonstrates Bryant’s unyielding desire to fight Father Time no matter how many times it strikes back.
If all these images seem familiar, well it should. Bryant’s done this his entire 17-year NBA career, while collecting five NBA titles, two Finals MVPs and a third-place standing on the league’s all-time scoring list in the process. But the highlights also resemble some of the acrobatic plays Bryant made in recent seasons, including some real-time play-by-play commentary stemmed from Time Warner Cable SportsNet and ESPN telecasts that showcased Bryant’s heroics.
The NBA2K14 trailer also showed the picture of Bryant on the floor after suffering the Achilles tear, while ominous music and his emotional post-game interview played in the background. Whether that serves as a foreshadowing of better times ahead for Bryant remains to be seen. But there’s many, including the NBA2K franchise, that believe that happen. After all, they’ve seen Bryant pull this many times before when the odds stacked against him suggested he couldn’t otherwise.
Follow L.A. Daily News Lakers beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org