On Thursday, January 23, it was reported that Kobe Bryant had torn a rotator cuff in his right shoulder while playing against the New Orleans Pelicans. He had to play mostly left-handed. The Lakers lost 96-80. Days later the Lakers announced that Bryant will miss the rest of the season. There were rumors before the shoulder injury that the woeful Lakers might shut down Bryant for the rest of the season, since the Lakers weren’t headed to the playoffs. Indeed Bryant had begun taking full games off to rest. He has one year remaining on the richest contract in the NBA.
Yet despite his legendary competitiveness, the injured Kobe was all smiles the day after the Pelicans game when he met with UFC middleweight fighter Anderson Silva. You must admit Kobe appears very relaxed in this photo Silva posted on Twitter. Look how Kobe even extends his arms around Silva’s two sons. That’s a tough movement with a rotator cuff injury. Would Kobe Bryant’s injury end his season if the Lakers were 33-12, instead of 12-33? We’ll never know. Anderson Silva, btw, is fighting Chael Sonnen on Saturday in Las Vegas (9:30pm on Fox Sports 1).