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Byron Scott: “If” Lakers out of playoff contention in March Kobe could get shut down

Miami Heat v Los Angeles Lakers

Miami Heat v Los Angeles Lakers

Andrew D. Bernstein

Right now, the Lakers are 10 games back of the eighth seed and the final playoff spot in the West. The Suns are on a 46-win pace with the Thunder and others chasing them, while the Lakers are on a 25-win pace.

It’s safe to say the Lakers are not making the playoffs.

With that reality, and considering the Lakers’ desire to keep Kobe healthy for one more year of the farewell tour, there is buzz the Lakers may try to shut him down. On Wednesday coach Byron Scott said that could happen somewhere after the All-Star break, reports Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times.

First, Kobe would have to sign off on this, and he very well may not. He’s not really that kind of guy, plus he feels a genuine responsibility to the people who pay to come see him play. He doesn’t like to let those people down.

Kobe is just going to be on a maintainance program for this season and next. It will be interesting next season, with that one considered his last, how much he’ll want to be out there for every game for those same reasons.