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Jeanie Buss ‘not worried’ about Kobe coming back and contributing for Lakers

Boston Celtics v Los Angeles Lakers

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 20: Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers wears the patch honoring Lakers late owner Dr. Jerry Buss during the game with the Boston Celtics at Staples Center on February 20, 2013 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

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The Lakers were unable to land any star-level players in free agency this summer, so the team’s fortunes will hinge almost completely on just how ready Kobe Bryant is to return from injuries that derailed him for all but six games last season.

L.A. team president and part-owner Jeanie Buss doesn’t feel that’s going to be a problem.

Speaking in a video interview with Lakers photographer Andy Bernstein on Time Warner Cable Sportsnet, Buss seemed confident that Bryant would return to form in the upcoming season.

As transcribed by Corey Hansford of Lakers Nation:

“Phil told me when Kobe got hurt, he said ‘Jeanie it’s gonna take a year, but he will come back.’ And I know Kobe. He put a lot of pressure on himself to help the team out last season [...] He came back after six months, but now I know he’s healed, and he’s ready to play, so I’m really not worried about him coming back and contributing.”

Bryant has said that he’s “70 in basketball years,” and has admitted that his athleticism isn’t what it once was.

New head coach Byron Scott may try to limit Bryant’s minutes, which would be wise -- especially early on as he gets reacclimated to the grind of the regular season schedule. If his health issues are indeed behind him, Bryant should once again be a more than reliable scoring option, and one with the potential to occasionally put together some breathtaking performances.