Updated 11:16 AM EST, Mon, Jan 18, 2021

Kobe Bryant Return Update: LA Lakers Superstar Guard Out 3 More Weeks, Could Miss Entire NBA Season

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Kobe Bryant will miss at least three more weeks, as reports indicated that the Los Angeles Lakers superstar is still experiencing swelling and soreness in his left knee.

According to ESPN Los Angeles, Bryant was evaluated by team physician Steve Lombardo on Friday, and results confirmed that the injured superstar will need at least three more weeks before having his injured knee re-evaluated for a possible return this season.

Bryant, who sustained a fractured lateral tibial plateau in his left knee on Dec. 17, has missed the Lakers' last 30 games. The 35-year-old superstar also missed the Lakers' first 19 games this season due to an Achilles injury in his left leg.

Based on the recent medical report, Bryant will remain sidelined until March 14, and the Lakers will only have another 14 games from that point.

Once cleared, reports indicate that Bryant will need more than a week of full contact practice to assess his condition, creating speculation that the 16-time All-Star could sit out the remainder of the 2013-14 NBA season.

When asked about the possibility of shutting down Bryant for their remaining games this season, Lakers coach Mike D'Antoni declined to comment, saying that the decision is totally out of his hands.

"I don't know," D'Antoni said. "That's out of my hands. We'll see. I have no answer to that one."

Pau Gasol, who will stay put with the Lakers for the rest of the season after not being dealt before Thursday's deadline, also declined to give a clear answer on whether or not Bryant will return this season, offering support for his teammate instead.

"I know it's tough for him and it's been a very tough year for him," Gasol said on Bryant. "I just hope that he gets healthy. If it takes a little longer, it takes a little longer. If that means he might not play this season, I'm sure he'll stay positive and look ahead. So, the main thing is he's got to be healthy."

In six games this season, Bryant averaged 13.8 points to go along with 6.3 assists and 4.3 rebounds per game. The 18-year veteran was voted by fans to start in the All-Star Game last week, but his injury forced him to miss this year's All-Star Game in New Orleans.

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