NBA Los Angeles Lakers

5 Reasons Why Los Angeles Lakers’ Kobe Bryant Should Sit For Rest Of The Season

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Kobe Should Sit out the Rest of the Season for the Lakers

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Things for the Los Angeles Lakers have not been the same since April of last year. Much like the New York Yankees struggled in 2013 with their captain Derek Jeter sidelined due to injuries, not having Kobe Bryant on the Lakers has clearly taken a toll on the franchise.

Bryant was displaying not only admirable basketball skills in the games leading up to April 12, but he was showing pure passion and intensity for the team he represented as he was playing almost full games to desperately try to help the Lakers make the playoffs.

Unfortunately, the workload on the 34-year old's body was too much, and Bryant would go on to tear his Achilles tendon on April 12. Even though the Lakers did eventually make the playoffs, they were swept in the first round to the eventual Western Conference Champions San Antonio Spurs.

Bryant was able to recover from tearing his Achilles tendon, and after missing 19 games in the 2013-14 season, he returned to the court on December 8. However, he was only able to play in six games before he suffered a lateral tibial plateau fracture in his left knee.

The injury was only supposed to sideline him for six weeks, but he has not played since December 17, and if the Lakers know what is good for them, they will continue that streak and not have him suit up again this year. There is absolutely no reason why Bryant should take the court for the remainder of the season, but here are five reasons why he should stay off the hardcourt.

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5. Start Focusing on Next Season and What it can Bring

Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Right now, Bryant is the only bright spot that the Lakers have in the foreseeable future. He is absolutely their big ticket sale when it comes to bringing in free agents to help get this once-proud franchise out of the gutter.

Bryant is a huge name in the NBA, but if he solely remains a big name and not a good, healthy player, then free agents next summer such as Kevin Love of the Minnesota Timberwolves are not going to want to join L.A. despite how rich their history is. Bryant needs to rest up now so he can have a full and extremely productive 2014-15 season. That way, new players will trust in his ability and will want to join him in trying to bring home another championship to the Lakers.

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4. He Needs to Think About his Legacy

Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports

It might be early to begin thinking about Bryant retiring from basketball, but there is no doubt that he is entering the final years of his career. With that in mind, Bryant wants to make sure that he can go out on top and be remembered for being a champion, not for having to hobble off the court with severe injuries or having his career abruptly end due to an injury.

If Bryant were to play again this year, he risks the chance of once again suffering a significant injury. If he sits out the rest of the season, then he can be healthy and fully ready to go in October.

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3. Kobe is an Aging Player

Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

Injuries or not, the fact is that Bryant has played a ton of basketball games throughout his career. He takes great pride in trying to lace up for the Lakers every day, but he has to now put that pride on the shelf and realize that not playing again this season is the best option for the team.

Before this year, Bryant averaged almost 73 (72.88) games a season since 1996. Not to mention, he has also played in an additional 220 games in the postseason. He is now 35-years old and needs to rest his body as much as possible so he can be as effective as possible during the final stretch of his career.

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2. Recent Injury Struggles

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

It is no secret that injuries have been crippling to Bryant as he has only played in six games in 11 months. Even after rehabbing his torn Achilles for eight months, he still managed to injure another body part.

With his team doing as poorly as they are, the time is now to let Bryant fully heal is body and be 100 percent ready to go for the 2014-2015 season. It is interesting to consider how effective and efficient of a player Bryant would be able to be if he can go through a whole season without any severe aches or pains slowing him down.

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1. The Season is Already Lost

Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

The Lakers are the worst team in the West and one of the worst teams in the entire NBA. They just lost to their heated rivals, the Los Angeles Clippers, by an embarrassing 48 points on Thursday night. That defeat, which was the biggest loss in franchise history, perfectly summed up the way this season has gone for the Lakers.

Their current record stands at 21-41 and they have to go 9-12 in their remaining games just to tie the worst record in franchise history since coming to L.A. for the 1960 season. Having Bryant on the court will change nothing as the Lakers have no chance of making the playoffs so there is no reason to have him play again and risked getting injured.