Lakers exec Jim Buss says bringing Kobe back is the team's top priority. (Cameron Browne/National Basketball)
Lakers executive vice president of basketball operations Jim Buss says the team is dedicated to keeping Kobe Bryant in L.A., according to ESPN.
Buss, the son of late Lakers owner Dr. Jerry Buss, told reporters the front office is focused on bringing back Kobe:
"Kobe is a top priority for us. He's a Laker legend and always will be. I don't think we're done winning championships with him yet."
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Bryant is scheduled to become a free agent at the end of the season if a deal is not reached, but Buss says Kobe's agent and Lakers' GM Mitch Kupchak are already in negotiations:
'[Lakers general manager] Mitch Kupchak and [Bryant's agent] Rob Pelinka have been talking, but with him being hurt, it has slowed the process some. I don't know when it'll get done, but I have faith in Rob and Mitch to work things out.'
Bryant suffered an Achilles injury late last season and his return is not yet known. He is due to make $30.5 million this season.