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Kobe getting pain killing injection in wrist before every game

Jan 5, 2012, 10:18 AM EDT

Los Angeles Lakers Kobe Bryant passes around Houston Rockets Courtney Lee and Kyle Lowry during their NBA game in Los Angeles Reuters

Kobe Bryant’s wrist injury seems to impact him on the court in spurts. There bad shooting nights and some lost control on the dribble, then he’ll turn around and look like his old self for a stretch. In the Lakers loss to Denver Kobe shot 6-of-28 and there were questions, he bounced back with 14-of-29 for 37 points against Houston and the wrist is forgotten.

Well, by the fans.

Not by Kobe, who is taking massive steps to keep playing — including pain killing injections before every game and ice wraps after, reports Kevin Ding of the Orange County Register.

He does not want to publicize all the details of his wrist, which is usable only because the bones were not moved permanently out of alignment without the ligament to hold them in place. But it’s now clear just how problematic the wrist is, and it’s fair to wonder where all this will take Bryant.

Bryant walked out of Staples Center on Tuesday night with something that looked like an oven mitten over his right hand and wrist. He wears an immobilizing brace over the wrist when off the court, meaning take-for-granted parts of life such as texting on his phone or zipping his fly become rather challenging.

What Lakers fans will get from Kobe is what they have gotten the last few years as he has played through injuries — moments of his old brilliance and nights where he is off but fights through it. He’ll be hot and cold, from game to game and even quarter to quarter.

Which is part of the reason Mike Brown is trying to evolve the Lakers offense to go to the post more first — allow Kobe to pick his spots to make plays rather than him having to initiate most of the offense for the team. Let Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol carry more of the load. That’s a process, Kobe still wants his shots and the ball is in his hands (it’s not like they have a traditional point guard).

Kobe’s not going to complain. But don’t for a second think this isn’t bothering him on every shot.

  1. keyshawn22 - Jan 5, 2012 at 10:42 AM

    This just shows the guy will go through anything in order to be able to keep gunning up his shots.

    • skids003 - Jan 5, 2012 at 1:04 PM

      I agree. It’s probably carpal tunnel syndrome from shooting so much. You can watch him in a game and tell when he’s decided he hasn’t shot in awhile, t’s his turn to jack up a few.

  2. loungefly74 - Jan 5, 2012 at 10:50 AM

    This just shows the guy will go through anything in order to be able to keep…his team competitive and a contender. kobe is a warrior. whenever you read those polls about best work ethic, etc…kobe is usually around the top of the list. man…i love being a Laker and Kobe fan.

    • loungefly74 - Jan 5, 2012 at 11:00 AM

      also…having 5 rings earns you a lot of respect.

  3. mrsdestinydevine - Jan 5, 2012 at 12:45 PM

    Kobe needs to take some time and really heal, you cant continue to go on doing things like this to your body. He plays this hard because he knows that the rest of the Lakers suck, but you cant be superman forever, even Superman had Kryptonite.

  4. glink123 - Jan 5, 2012 at 1:07 PM

    I’m a lifetime Bulls fan (30+ years) and I’ve seen MJ show this same toughness. Kobe is the very last “old school” player left in the league. He sees that $28 million per year contract, and he feels the obligation to the team and the fans to play through any injury. This isn’t about ego or “getting his shots”, this is pure and simple commitment. It’s refreshing to see, and after Kobe retires, we’ll never see it again in the NBA.

    • Chris Fiorentino - Jan 5, 2012 at 1:58 PM

      “we’ll never see it again in the NBA.”

      I think we are seeing it from a few guys already…Rose, Durant are two that come to mind.

  5. glink123 - Jan 5, 2012 at 1:14 PM

    p.s. another good article by Kurt Helin. good to see factual, relevant content, and not random speculation.

  6. glink123 - Jan 5, 2012 at 4:48 PM

    I guess we’ll find out tomorrow night, if Rose suits up and scores 40 with that bad elbow. and for the record, I’m the biggest Rose fan on the planet.

  7. allball23 - Jan 5, 2012 at 10:45 PM

    Kobe will stunt bynums growth. He has to be the man all the time and won’t play second fiddle to anybody. bynum is really looking like an elite center

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