It’s been speculated about for months now, but it’s finally a reality – Kobe Bryant is returning to the basketball court. The legendary shooting guard will make his season debut on Sunday against the Toronto Raptors from the Staples Center. This is great news for the Los Angeles Lakers, as the team is currently treading water at 9-9 in the Western Conference.
It’s great that one of the game’s most popular players is ready to return, but the big question on everyone’s mind – will he be the same following Achilles surgery?
Not only does Kobe have a serious injury to battle back from, he’s also 35-years old and battling father time. He’s even admitted that there’s no way he can be as explosive as he once was. However, to this point, the famous Laker has given us no reason to doubt him. In his career, there’s never been an obstacle he’s been unable to overcome. At the same time, he’s never had to fight a battle quite like this.
I’m not completely sold he can get back to being one of the five best players in the game, but I do think he’ll regain his prior form. Bryant will adapt to his ‘new’ body and find a way to still be effective. He may not be able to carry the Lakers like he once did, but help figures to be on the way soon. Will it be in the form of Carmelo Anthony or maybe in the form of a high draft pick in 2014’s draft? We’ll have to wait and see, but you can rest assured that there’s no way Bryant would come back if he wasn’t able to be his old self, or at least 90 percent of his old self.