Down
enlarge shrink
Kobe Bryant: 'I'm a Laker for life'
0:56 | NBA
Kobe Bryant: 'I'm a Laker for life'
Saturday November 7th, 2015

Kobe Bryant let it be known on Friday that he’s not leaving the Los Angeles Lakers anytime soon.

“How many times do I need to say it? God. I’ve said it so many times,” Bryant told reporters after a 104–98 win in Brooklyn“I’m here. I’m a Laker for life. I’m not playing anywhere else, no matter what. It’s not going to happen. I bleed purple and gold, and that’s just how it’s going to be.”

New York Knicks president and former Lakers coach Phil Jackson caused a stir in September when he said that while he didn’t believe Bryant would retire after this season, he thought his former star’s time in L.A. was coming to an end.

• SI’s NBA Week in Review | Five factors that will decide NBA title

“That’s Phil baiting you guys like he always does,” Bryant said. “He’s a master at it.”

On Saturday, Bryant, 37, suggested this season could be his last.

“If you asked me today, I’d say this would be my last year,” he told reporters. “But you never know.”

Bryant is in the final year of his contract with the Lakers, which will pay him $25 million, more than any player in the NBA. Through five games, he is shooting 32.1% from the field with an average of 16.2 points and 3.8 rebounds per game.

JENKINS: Kobe, the mentor | NBA Tank Rankings | Data Dimes

In 31 minutes on Friday, Bryant went for 18 points on 5-of-16 shooting with three rebounds.

- Kenny Ducey

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide - from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Seth Davis, and more - delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.