Kobe Bryant will not continue his career in Europe following his retirement from the NBA after this season, as he said in a conference call and as Bill Oram of the Orange County Register relays. The Lakers swingman doesn’t think he could endure the rigors of another season, so he has ruled out that option, Oram continues. “I would have loved to play overseas for a season,” Bryant said. “But it’s not going to happen. … My body won’t let me.” Bryant reiterated his desire to play for USA Basketball in the Summer Olympics next summer, Oram adds.
In other news around the Western Conference:
- JaVale McGee is gradually carving out a rotation spot with the Mavericks, Tim MacMahon of ESPN.com reports. McGee is still trying to get in top shape and wants to shed another 10-15 pounds, MacMahon continues. The backup center had 10 points, five rebounds and three blocks in 18 minutes against the Grizzlies on Friday, a sign that he’s making progress, MacMahon adds. “He’s got really unusual length for a guy like that and he’s got great athleticism, too,” Dallas coach Rick Carlisle told the team’s media. “Look, he’s worked hard. It’s taken a while. We’ve got to be a little bit careful about how long we play him in terms of stretches of minutes.”
- Marreese Speights hasn’t been as efficient as he was last season, and if he doesn’t turn that around, the Warriors will look for another stretch four, posits Monte Poole of CSNBayArea.com. Golden State is studying the trade market, Poole writes, though it’s unclear if the team is looking into deals involving Speights.
- The Spurs recalled point guard Ray McCallum from their D-League affiliate in Austin, the team’s website reports. McCallum has appeared in four D-League games, as well as 12 games with San Antonio.
- The Thunder recalled small forward Josh Huestis from their D-League affiliate on Monday, according to the team’s website. Huestis, who is still looking to make his NBA debut, has started 10 games with Oklahoma City Blue, averaging 10.1 points, 5.2 rebounds, and 1.3 blocks in 32.8 minutes.