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Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant has suffered a torn rotator cuff in his right shoulder and it puts the rest of his season in doubt.
It is reported that Bryant has been bothered by a strain in his shoulder since pre-season, but he aggravated the problem in the second half of Wednesday night’s loss to the New Orleans Pelicans.
An MRI scan revealed the extent of the damage on Thursday and it has raised questions as to whether or not we will see the Lakers legend back in action this season.
Sources told ESPN that if Bryant requires surgery, he will no doubt miss the rest of the season and it is understood that there is a strong concern within the franchise that that will be the case.
“It felt fine when I went up, didn’t feel too good when I came down,” Bryant said after the game.
While Bryant was seen grabbing the shoulder as he made his way back up the court, he checked out the game but came back before favouring his shoulder and dribbling with his left hand.
Coach Byron Scott noticed that he was in discomfort and withdrew him from the game but it was irrelevant as the damage had already been suffered.
The deadline to apply to the NBA for a disabled-player exception passed on January 15 so the Lakers will not be able to get any roster relief from the injury if Bryant’s season is over.
The 36-year-old is averaging 22.3 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.6 assists but he has been severely limited by injuries this season and there has been suggestions that he has considered an early retirement with just one more year remaining on his contract.
Nevertheless, Bryant will also be disappointed to miss the All-Star Game after he was voted in as a starter for the West for a record 17th consecutive year.