Kobe Bryant injury: Lakers star still hopes to play in season opener

Greg Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Bryant suffered an Achilles injury to end this year's campaign, but the Lakers star hopes to be healthy enough to start next season away from the sidelines.

Kobe Bryant suffered a rather gruesome injury when the Los Angeles Lakers star tore his Achilles in the latter portion of his team's season. The future Hall of Famer doesn't plan on letting the injury affect him too far into the future, however, as the All-NBA First Team member has plans to play right away next season.

The initial diagnosis wasn't clear how long Bryant would be out considering his age and the amount of minutes he's put on his legs, but the veteran sat down with the ESPNLA's Dave McMenamin this week to speak about a timetable. And the timetable appears to be "ASAP", to no one's surprise.

"I hope so," Bryant said in a sit-down interview with ESPNLosAngeles.com on Monday. "That's the challenge. With the tendon, there's really only but so much you can do. There's a certain amount of time that they deem necessary for the tendon to heal where you don't overstretch it and now you never get that spring back.

"So, you just have to be patient, let the tendon heal, and then when that moment comes when they say, 'OK, we can take off the regulator so to speak and now it's on you to train as hard as you can to get back to where you want to be,' that's going to be a good day."

Bryant obviously hasn't got to the point where he can take the 'regulator' off so it's unclear if he'll actually be able to start next season in a jersey instead of a suit, but the Lakers' star seems pretty determined to make that dream a reality.

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