Image: Doug Pensinger | Getty Images

Kobe Bryant was examined by Lakers’ doctors Wednesday and has ruled out for the rest of the 2013-14 NBA season.

Lakers’ head athletic trainer, Gary Vitti, gave an update on his recovery process:

“Kobe will have the entire offseason to heal, rehab and prepare; we look forward to him being 100% for the start of next season.”

Bryant also made a short statement to the media Wednesday.

“Obviously this has been a frustrating and disappointing season, but I appreciate all the support I’ve received from the Lakers and the fans, and look forward to being back and ready for the start of training camp.”

Bryant fractured his lateral tibial plateau in his left knee just 6 games after returning from an Achilles injury that left him out of commission for 8 months. He was originally projected to only miss an additional 6 weeks, but after little progress his return was delayed. In a recent interview with’s Jacques Slade, Bryant expressed frustration with his rehab:

“It’s progressing slowly. It really tests my patience”

This devastating news comes at no surprise to most Laker fans who have long suggested Bryant sit out this lost season anyway. With 18 games left in the season, the Lakers are in a three-way tie for the last spot in the Western Conference at 22-42.

  • Raymond

    The Lakers so called real die hard fans that say tanking is not something they approve of and that the Lakers are too proud to tank are fooling themselves because they will be cringing and crying,whining once Andrew Wiggins or Jabari Parker or Dante Exum or Embiid start regularly dropping 20 or 30 points on the Lakers in the future leading their respective teams to victories over the lowly Lakers.

    All the while the guy the Lakers draft will be lucky to still be in the NBA averaging 8 points a game and be a bench player.Big difference between picking in the top 4 or dropping to 8-14.Lakers need to tank and lose the majority of their games or else the future looks bleak with every win the Lakers get set back.Mike D’Antoni should be fired for trying to win while the Owner and GM clearly want to tank the rest of the season.

    It’s way too late in the season to try to win meaningless games.Tanking is the only way the Lakers will get a young superstar.Kobe Bryant is not going to play the rest of the season that’s the biggest indication the big wigs want to tank it’s up to Mike D’Antoni to follow the command of the Lakers FO and make sure they lose all their games or else he should be fired for failing to tank properly.This is reality honestly.Lakers future is riding on the team tanking for a top 4 pick.

    • Ralph Rivera

      I agree his high fast pace bs style will not win a championship

    • Ralph Rivera

      As long as jim buss runs the show he will countinue to kill the legacy of his father and lakers i see no progress with him as owner..let phil back let jerry west back hire magic. He wont because for jim its about ego.

    • Josh

      The Lakers could lose every game the rest of the season and still end up with the 14th pick. They could also win every game and end up with the first pick. That’s why they call it a draft “lottery.” If D’Antoni ever wants another chance to coach in this league, he will try to coach this team to wins. If he loses out, his career is over.

      And who says a #5 pick will average 8 points and be out of the league in a couple years? Ever heard of Kobe Bryant, Joe Johnson, Zach Randolph, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili, Gilbert Arenas, Amare Stoudemire, Carlos Boozer, Dwyane Wade, David West, Luol Deng, Andre Iguodala, Al Jefferson, Josh Smith, Anderson Varejao, David Lee, Monta Ellis, Andray Blatche, Rudy Gay, Rajon Rondo, Joakim Noah, Marc Gasol, Kevin Love, Roy Hibbert, Goran Dragic, Stephen Curry, DeMarcus Cousins, Paul George, Lance Stephenson, Klay Thompson, Kawhi Leonard, Chandler Parsons, Isaiah Thomas, Damian Lillard? Just a few who have been drafted outside the top 4.

      Meanwhile, a few recent top 4 picks for you…
      Evan Turner, Wesley Johnson, Hasheem Thabeet, Michael Beasley, Adam Morrison, Darko Milicic, Kwame Brown.

      I’m a true, die-hard Laker fan, and I want them to win as many games as possible. If they get the #1 pick, great. If they get the #14 pick, use it wisely. Losing games guarantees nothing except that players get comfortable with losing, struggle to make teams going forward, and people lose their jobs with little chance of getting rehired.

  • Rizal

    Did Laker Nation really think Kobe was going to come back this season? I’m a huge Kobe fan and appreciate everything he’s done for the organization but he hurts the Lakers more when he’s on the floor. Telling Kobe to step back and let others take over is like telling us not to breathe. He may sell tickets everywhere he goes but in the end we can’t win with the Kobe of today. PERIOD. I’m calling no play-offs next season too. (PROVE ME WRONG!)