Press-Telegram: Kobe Bryant was a no-show at practice Saturday morning, earning a day off to rest and recover from an upper respiratory illness. He was termed “probable” to play in tonight’s game against the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center.
Bryant played spectacularly at times while scoring 37 points and recording seven assists in the Lakers’ victory Friday night over the Milwaukee Bucks. He was especially effective while scoring 16 points in the decisive fourth quarter.
Coach Phil Jackson has seen Bryant play through illnesses in the past, including Dec. 4 in the Lakers’ win over the Minnesota Timberwolves and, more famously, in Game 5 of the 2002 Western Conference finals against the Sacramento Kings.
“I think Gary (Vitti, the Lakers’ athletic trainer) could speak to (Bryant’s discomfort) better than I can, but I do know that if it’s not something that’s an extremely high fever, he can perform,” Jackson said. “He was supposedly not febrile.”
Bryant complained of headaches and feeling weak, but was not feverish.
“I think energy-wise, it’s just a matter of focus,” Jackson said of Bryant’s ability to play through an illness.