MITCH KUPCHAK Admits KOBE BRYANT Retiring Next Year




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Los Angeles Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak said star guard Kobe Bryant has told the GM that the 2015-16 season will be Bryant’s last with the Lakers.



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“He has indicated to me that this is it,” Kupchak said Thursday in a radio appearance with SiriusXM NBA Radio.

Bryant is scheduled to make a league-high $25 million in his final contract season — his 20th — with the Lakers. But there’s speculation that Bryant could play beyond next season, and Bryant said he hasn’t ruled out that possibility.



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“I think first and foremost, he’s on the last year of a deal,” Kupchak told SiriusXM NBA Radio. “There have been no discussions about anything going forward. I don’t think there will be.”

Bryant will be 37 years old when next season begins, and his past three seasons have ended early because of injury. He played only 35 games last season before suffering a season-ending shoulder injury.

“A year from now, if there’s something different to discuss, then it will be discussed then,” Kupchak said of Bryant potentially playing beyond next season. “I talk to him from time to time … and he is recovering. He’s running. He’s getting movement and strength in the shoulder. We expect a full recovery, but yeah, he’s much closer to the end than to the beginning.” – ABCNews