The Los Angeles Lakers came into Friday night’s game against the Golden State Warriors needing a win to stay in pole position for the playoffs. They got a win, but Friday night was a massive Lakers loss. Kobe Bryant left the game with a little over three minutes to go with a probable torn Achilles, and his season is expected to be over.
After the game, there was no doubt as to what had happened. While waiting to enter the Lakers locker room, John Black, Los Angeles Lakers spokesman, informed Triple Threat that Bryant had a probable torn Achilles and an MRI would be performed on Saturday to confirm the injury.
Bryant conjured enough courage to pick up crutches and make his way over to his locker in order to talk to the media. The frustration and sadness was visible on his face. One eye bloodshot, Bryant was asked if this was the greatest disappointment of his career.
“By far,” Bryant said and labored through talk about how the team had fought through incredible adversity to control its own destiny.
After making promises of breaking down film and helping coach the team from the sidelines, Bryant disappeared. He completely ridiculed the reporter who questioned if this would be the last time he played, so expect Bryant back on the court.
When Bryant’s presence had evaporated, Pau Gasol emerged distraught. Gasol had led his team to victory after Bryant went down, tallied a triple-double, but looked about as mentally defeated as anyone had ever seen him.
“He had the courage and the strength to come out and talk to [the media]. I don’t know if I could have done it,” Gasol said. “That’s very remarkable.”
Dwight Howard was next to give his eulogy.
“It’s just sad for Kobe,” Howard started out. “We’ve just been faced with injuries all year. And it sucks. When somebody gets healthy, somebody else goes down. It’s tough.”
On Saturday, Bryant will have an MRI to confirm what he already knows, and the Lakers will hold practice to prepare for the San Antonio Spurs. The Lakers can still make the playoffs with two wins in their final two games, but they just lost their best player and their season.