Timeline ends debate over whether Bryant will feature in the All-Star game.
Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant will be reassessed in three weeks as he has yet to fully recover from his fractured knee.
The 35-year-old is still dealing with pain and swelling in his left knee and has had his comeback delayed after being re-evaluated by team physician Dr. Steve Lombardo before Tuesday’s game against the Indiana Pacers.
Bryant has now missed the last 21 games with this injury after initially missing the first 19 games of the season whilst recovering from a ruptured Achilles.
He averaged 13.8 points, 6.3 assists, 4.3 rebounds and had 42.5 percent shooting in his appearances this season, but it is unlikely he will be able to play a vital role in the coming weeks.
“[I’m] down about it,” Bryant told the Los Angeles Times, as reported by ESPN.
“I didn’t know what to expect. It’s an injury that I really can’t measure so I have no idea what it’s supposed to feel like. It’s tough. It never really hurt when I was walking on it in the first place, so it’s tough to gauge it.”
The updated timeline for Bryant’s comeback effectively ends the debate over whether or not he would be able to feature in the All-Star game in New Orleans on February 16.
Bryant has insisted since it was announced that he would be a starter for the Western Conference All-Star team that he would prefer his spot to go to one of the “young guys”, who had appeared in more games and played better this season.
However, it is now expected that the NBA will announce his replacement, with Scott Brooks likely to decide on who will make his starting five after being confirmed as coach of the West team given that the Oklahoma City Thunder have the best record in the Western Conference.