NBA Los Angeles Lakers

Kobe Bryant: “IF And When I Announce My Retirement, I Will Do So Directly To You”

Matt Kryger-USA TODAY

On Tuesday, after a practice with the Los Angeles Lakers, Kobe Bryant answered a reporter’s question about his retirement from basketball.

Kobe was asked what would happen at the end of the 2013-2014 season when his current contract with the Lakers expires. Bryant simply answered, “We’ll see where it goes,” Bryant said. “It will be a lot of basketball being played.”

And so, sports media was flooded with news about Kobe’s retirement.

Early Wednesday, Kobe ended all speculation about his retirement via his personal facebook page:

Long practices but getting a ton of work done. I had a lil tendon issue in my foot that kept me sidelined for 2 days but I’m full speed ahead once again.

Our timing with one another gets better by the day and DH is good to go on full contact. I’m tired and sore but that kind of pain feels good especially when you know what’s at stake.

As far as retirement, I’m not sure how many years I have left but know this: IF and When I announce my retirement, I will do so directly to you first. Let’s focus on getting this season taken care of. It should be a fun one. I feel strong, light and quick. I can’t wait till Oct 31.
It’s on.

Mamba out

Previously, Kobe has noted  to, that his 17 seasons with the Lakers, “seems like a really long time to continue to stay at a high, high level of training and preparation and health. … [But] it’s not about health necessarily. It’s about, Do I want to do it? Do I have that hunger to continue to prepare at a high level?”

Kobe will play as long as he’s hungry. What keeps Kobe hungry at this point in his accomplished career can only be one thing: to match or surpass the number of championships won by Michael Jordan. 

Jordan: six.

Kobe: five.