Kobe Bryant is intrigued by the idea of finishing his basketball career in Europe. Asked about the possibility of playing a season in Europe, Bryant told Yahoo! Sports: “It would be natural for me to go do it. It wouldn’t be a stretch at all. I grew up here.”
Bryant still has two years left on his Lakers contract. He’s still performing on an All-Star level, and his knees are holding up with his 34th birthday approaching this month. Bryant has liveed in Italy for several years as his father is Italian League star Joe Bryant.
If Bryant ever wanted to make this leap at the end of his career, his decision on where to play would be an interesting one.
Bryant considered several offers during the NBA lockout and was going to sign with a team in China for $2 million per month until the China Basketball Association passed a rule forbidding its teams to sign NBA players with existing contracts. Bryant also had discussions with Virtus Bologna of the Italian League. His agent, Rob Pelinka, went deep into discussions about a deal but at the end, nothing came of it as Bryant and the Italian League couldn’t agree on terms, and the end of the lockout stopped the discussions.
For now, Bryant is still chasing his second gold medal with Team USA, and his sixth championship with the Lakers this season.