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Lakers trainer: Kobe’s knee issues “can be dealt with”

May 27, 2011, 1:32 PM EDT

Memphis Grizzlies v Los Angeles Lakers Getty Images

Kobe Bryant may only be 32 but he has put a lot of miles on his body.

He has played more minutes than Magic Johnson, more than Larry Bird, and he’s right there with Michael Jordan (which includes the Wizards years we all try to forget). That has taken its toll on knees that have seen multiple surgeries and even have had to be drained during playoff runs.

Last season for the Lakers it was an issue — Kobe rarely practiced with the team. That mean’s he was not there to push them, to demand the attention to detail that wins championships. Under the pressure of the playoffs you saw the results.

Longtime Lakers trainer Gary Vitti, in a detailed interview with our man Mike Trudell at, that Kobe’s knees are not in great shape but they have some miles left on them.

“Structurally there are some issues that cannot be reversed, but can be dealt with. There are a couple of cards we have up our sleeve that we plan on playing, and he and I have been in daily communication about that.”

“We’d like to see him practice more, but we don’t want the time that he spends on the court being spent on frivolous things,” he said. “You gotta get him out there when he needs to be out there, and get him off the floor when he doesn’t. It’s more about quality time than quantity time.”

So, pretty much like every veteran. It’s something Mike Brown and staff need to be aware of next season.

A longer summer off should help Kobe, too.

  1. randysavage4ever - May 27, 2011 at 10:04 PM

    Even is Kobe loses most explosiveness left, he is still NOT going to fall off that quickly…

    because Kobe is a great shooter, with a post up back to basket game…

    Not to mention his intelligence and savvy…

    No more dunks & acrobatic lay-ups, more smart passing & fade-aways…

  2. purdueman - May 28, 2011 at 1:03 AM

    Hey! I’ve got a suggestion! How about just having the doc lop off both his knees and replace ’em with artificial ones? That way he could just blow away like a rank fart in church on a hot summer’s day, AND he wouldn’t be able to chase innocent, naive young women around any more either!

  3. diablito0402 - May 28, 2011 at 2:01 AM

    Wow this purdue man guy sounds very smart. Shut up and go eat a hot dog huh.

  4. jliburd - May 28, 2011 at 12:41 PM

    Damn…it’s a sad day when your favorite players gets old.

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