Kobe Bryant still has three weeks before he can consider returning to the lineup for the Los Angeles Lakers. Bryant, 35, has experienced pain and swelling in his left knee and will be re-evaluated in March, according to a report from ESPN.com's Dave McMenamin.
The Lakers star fractured his left knee back on Dec. 17 and was originally expected to miss around six weeks. Prior to that, Bryant had battled to come back from a ruptured left Achilles suffered in April of 2013.
D'Antoni on whether Kobe will return this season: "I have no answer for that one."— KEVIN DING (@KevinDing) February 22, 2014
Although he has seen the floor for just six games this season, Bryant has posted averages of 13.8 points, 6.3 assists, and 4.3 rebounds including shooting 42.5 percent from the floor. Without him, the Lakers have been abysmal this season and are just a half game out of last place in the Western Conference with a record of 19-36.
A return in mid-March would give Bryant fewer than 20 games left to play in the regular season. The Lakers have made it clear they don't want him returning unless he is at 100%. However unlikely, we all know Bryant's instincts and competitive spirit could push him to the floor before the season is over.