Posted April 14, 2013 on
AP on Fox
LeBron James' longest string of missed games in his NBA career was five straight, and that was because of a finger injury more than five years ago.
He knows he's fortunate in that regard.
So he cannot really relate to what Kobe Bryant is dealing with now that the Los Angeles Lakers star's season is over with a torn Achilles that required surgery and is expected to keep him sidelined for up to nine months.
But while Bryant's heavy workload down the stretch of this season remains a talking point as to whether that played a role in the injury, James said he's among those who think players should simply never think about getting hurt.
''You can't say, `OK, I'm not playing this game because I'm afraid of injury' or `I'm not playing this summer,''' James said Sunday after the Miami Heat beat the Chicago Bulls 105-93. ''The opportunity is there. There's going to be a time when you can't play the game at all because Father Time has caught up with you. So you've got to try to do as much as you can while you can.''
Bryant played 3,018 minutes this season, his most since 2007-08. Entering Sunday, only Oklahoma City's Kevin Durant, Portland's Damian Lillard and Milwaukee's Monta Ellis logged more court time this season than Bryant, who has played 17 seasons - two more than Durant, Lillard and Ellis combined.
But James hardly ever wants to miss games, either, even at this point in the season with the Heat already wrapping up home-court advantage throughout the playoffs.
''That's not who we are,'' James said. ''We can't play the game worried about injuries. ... If you play your professional life worried about injuries, you're never going to be able to maximize your potential. You can't do that. You've got to just go out and play.''
Heat coach Erik Spoelstra also weighed in on the Bryant injury Sunday, saying that seeing it made him sick to his stomach.
James said he was sad for Bryant, and reiterated what he wrote in a tweet after the Lakers' guard got hurt Friday night: he has no doubt the NBA's No. 4 all-time scorer will one day return.
''I know how much work he puts into the game,'' James said.
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As Kobe Bryant recovers from surgery, the Los Angeles Lakers are left holding on to playoff hopes, knowing they do not stand a chance without their star. As L.A. continues a playoff push, it is hard to find the motivation to care about the Kobe Bryant-less Lakers. It is as if the season, like Kobe’s, has already ended.
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The Miami Heat have done everything they needed to do to claim home-court advantage throughout the playoffs, set single-season franchise records and can even scout their first-round opponent, the Milwaukee Bucks.
The last thing they need to do is stay healthy for their final two games, so a makeshift lineup is likely Monday night when they visit the Cleveland Cavaliers.
The question is bound to come up often over the next few days as Kobe Bryant's injury, the necessary recovery time, and his age are discussed by anyone that has access to a camera, microphone, or podcast. Someone went ahead and just asked Kobe.
His response comes as no surprise:
"Are you kidding?" - Kobe Bryant when asked if his career is over.
Unless you were under a rock for the last two days, you probably heard that Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant had suffered a season-ending ACL tear against the Golden State Warriors.The injury could possibly end Bryant's career with the Lakers but it appears that Mr. Bryant is in good spirits at the current moment.Thanks to his Twitter/Instagram pages on Sunday, Kobe decided...
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Since I initially posted this on Philly.com this morning, Kobe's injury has already been confirmed as an Achilles tear, and Kobe is already undergoing surgery. He didn't go under the knife without tweeting out a picture his fans first though. The Lakers have struggled through injury issues all season, and to their credit they have been able to persevere and remain in contention...
Kobe Bryant will have a long road to recovery after tearing his Achilles.credit: jefflewisphotography.com
The basketball world came to a screeching halt after news broke of Kobe Bryant’s torn Achilles. At the end of one of the toughest seasons you could imagine, Bryant’s leg gave out under him with just a few minutes remaining in a game against the Golden State Warriors.
Kobe Bryant underwent surgery on his torn left Achilles on Saturday and he made sure to keep all the fans updated on Twitter and Instagram.
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