When the crew at TNT announces the NBA All-Star Team starting lineups tonight, Kobe Bryant will be on it. He and Rocket Tracy McGrady were well ahead in the voting for guards in the West heading into the final week (Steve Nash was third).
Itâ€™s a well-deserved honor for Kobe, Iâ€™ve said before I think heâ€™s had a good season and has started to really grow as a player into the leader he can be.
That said, I would prefer he doesnâ€™t play in the big game in Denver February 20th. If he has yet to return to the court from his sprained ankle I think itâ€™s safe to say he would not play. But what if he plays Feb. 13 and against Utah Feb. 15? How does he tell the league he doesnâ€™t want to play in its showcase game because of health issues when heâ€™s already returned to the court?
If he goes to Denver to play, I hope itâ€™s for limited minutes. His priority is the Lakers â€” and I think he knows that. I just donâ€™t want Kobe playing fewer minutes Feb. 22 against Boston or Feb. 23 up in Portland because of what happens in Denver. The Lakers need every win they can get much more than the West needs a win in Denver.