Kobe Bryant, a five-time NBA champion with the Los Angeles Lakers, says he’ll never play for another team.
“I’ve said it so many times — I’m a Laker for life,” Bryant said Friday after the Lakers beat the Brooklyn Nets 104-98 for their first win of the fledgling season. “I bleed purple and gold.”
Bryant, 37, received a rapturous welcome from fans in what might have been his last appearance in the Nets’ Barclays Center arena.
But he couldn’t hide his impatience when asked after the contest about former coach Phil Jackson’s pre-season suggestion that Bryant might continue his career with another club after his Lakers contract — which pays him $25 million a year — expires at the end of this campaign.
“That’s Phil baiting you guys like he always does,” said Bryant, who has said he’ll make up his mind about retirement when the season ends.