Lakers’ Byron Scott plans to take Kobe Bryant out at end of 1st & 3rd quarters

Lakers guard Kobe Bryant won't participate in many shootarounds if at all moving forward. (File photo/Daily News)

Lakers guard Kobe Bryant won’t participate in many shootarounds if at all moving forward. (File photo/Daily News)

By Mark Medina and Evan Barnes

Lakers coach Byron Scott will adopt another approach to conserve Kobe Bryant without significantly taking away his presence from the team.

When the Lakers (3-12) host the Minnesota Timberwolves (3-10) on Friday at Staples Center, expect Bryant to sit out toward the end of the first and third quarters so that he remains fresh in the fourth quarter. Bryant’s 35 minutes in the Lakers’ 99-93 loss on Wednesday to Memphis mirrored his season average. But Bryant sat out the final 1:47 of the first quarter and the last 1:30 of the third quarter after spending most games playing those periods in their entirety.

“The last game I thought he was fresher so again I’ll stick with what we did the last game,” Scott said after morning shootaround on Friday at the Lakers’ practice facility in El Segundo. “He feels good physically. I want to get to a point where he says he feels great physically.”

That’s why Bryant sat out all of the Lakers’ three practices this week on Monday, Tuesday and Thanksgiving Day. Bryant also missed morning shootarounds both on Wednesday and Friday. Scott said Bryant will typically just take “a few shots but nothing taxing.”

This all reflects the Lakers’ ongoing quest to handle the 36-year-old Bryant with care after playing in only six games last season with injuries to his left Achilles and left knee. Although Bryant has averaged a league-leading 26.7 points per game, he has shot a career-low 37.9 percent from the field.


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Follow L.A. Daily News Lakers beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter and on Facebook. E-mail him at mark.medina@langnews.com

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  • Mamba Boricua

    Byron Scott should use Kobe only 8 minutes per quarter. 1st qrt. he should start until minute 8 and start 2nd qrt. after the 4th minute of playing, and he should do the same with 3rd and 4th quarters. 32 to minutes at most Kobe should play.

    Byron should learn from Popovich that he only used Duncan and Manu less than 30 min. per game for a few years now and everybody knows what happened last year. They win!

    That’s the only way Kobe will have fresh legs to finish games and count with him at clutch time. I really think the Lakers could have won some games if it wasn’t that when they get into a close 4th quarter Kobe looks burn and desperate and want to play hero ball.

    Byron should trust more the other players like Lin, Davis and Swaggy. This guys can play more than 36+ minutes. But no Byron decided to play the old guy more minutes than the youngest. THAT’S DUMB.

    It’s time to play like a team not like Kobe the savior. Scott should know that, is a long season and he’s burning Kobe already.

    And they should trade Wesley Johnson for ever and ever and bring someone that is consistent not this fool that should not be in the NBA anymore.

    It’s time for everybody on the team step up for there own good, for the fans and for the team.

    Go Lakers!

  • Kobe

    Career high 26.7 points per game? Has the writer of this article ever even watched basketball before? His current season average doesn’t even make his top 10… 05/06 he averaged 35.1 points per game

  • Guest

    When you can’t practice or even participate in shoot around a it is time to retire.

  • Lauren

    When you cannot practice or participate in shoot arounds it is time to retire.

  • bullandbear

    BS should try to trust other players. They need to be trusted before they can grow. I’m sure they will surprise him. That would be very helpful to build up the relationship and chemistry among the players and with the coach. Kobe is 36 already, but he still doesn’t understand how to be a real “great” player. It’s not just how well he can play, but how much he can inspire.