Kobe Bryant’s last game will be in a Lakers’ uniform, and not in Team USA jersey. Earlier this season, Bryant hinted at the possibility of him playing in the 2016 summer Olympics with team USA in Rio de Janeiro. It would make sense for Kobe to retire after (possibly) winning another gold medal with team USA, but that possibility is over.
Kobe said in a pregame interview on Sunday that he has no intention of playing after his final game as a Laker. This may come as a surprise to a few and a relief to others, but with Kobe withdrawing his name from the Olympics, it puts more pressure of the Lakers’ organization and coaching staff to make sure he will play his final basketball game ever on April 13th against the Utah Jazz.
The Olympics is for the younger generation of basketball players to shine and Kobe understands that. Kobe is playing through injuries and old age and still performs almost every game so fans can have one last chance to see him play, his body can only take so much. He needs a long vacation, which will now officially begin after his last game as a Laker.