Minnesota beat the NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers 111-92 on Monday night in their preseason opener played a long way from home.
Kobe is still recovering from knee surgery from the offseason, which only allowed him to play for a very short time in this game. That wasn’t enough to satisfy the crowd, which chanted “Kobe, Kobe, Kobe” during the second half.
“We had plans to play Kobe in two segments, but one was enough,” Jackson said. “He iced down at halftime. I probably should have told the PA announcer so he could tell the crowd.”
Lamar Odom led the Lakers with 17 points, Gasol had seven and Fisher added 12. Center Andrew Bynum missed the game following knee surgery.
Bryant who has taken his rehab very seriously, has only completed two full practices since training camp began. He stated he probably wouldn’t have played at all if it had been a home game.
“I had a sense of responsibility to get out there and play for a little bit,” Bryant said, adding that the chants from the crowd tempted him to play more. “I wanted to get up and get in. But my shoes were already unlaced, and I had ice on my knees.”