Kobe Bryant will not be part of the 2016 Olympic team, tweets Mark Medina of The Los Angeles Daily News. Bryant, who is retiring after this season, said he wants his final game to be in a Lakers uniform. He won gold medals in 2008 and 2012, but decided he’ll leave 2016 to the younger players, saying, “I think it’s their time.” Bryant added that he has no interest in broadcasting once his career is finished (Twitter link).
There’s more Lakers news out of Los Angeles:
- Coach Byron Scott may be ready to give more responsibility to the younger Lakers, Medina writes. That means the first-round picks from the last two seasons, Julius Randle and D’Angelo Russell, could be called on to close out games along with rookies Larry Nance Jr. and Anthony Brown and second-year combo guard Jordan Clarkson. “It’s all about getting these young guys to continue to develop,” Scott said. “Then the winning part comes into that as well. We’ve been in a bunch of games. Now we have to get to the point where these guys learn how to close these games out.”
- Nance has been the most surprising of the youthful Lakers, according to Mike Bresnahan of The Los Angeles Times. The 27th overall pick in last year’s draft, Nance has made an impression with his leaping ability and outside shooting. “When it is all said and done and we look at their careers, Larry Nance Jr. may be the more advanced out of all these players,” TNT analyst Reggie Miller said this week. “He has the most energy.”