Finally, some good news.
Kobe Bryant hasn't been in hiding since rupturing his Achilles last April, but updates on his progress have alternated between plentiful, Delphic and misleading. Covert trips to Germany meant both something and nothing. Footage of him running was cause for joy and skepticism. No news was great and terrifying at the same time.
After seven months of rehabilitating a torn Achilles tendon, Kobe Bryant finally returned to practice with the Los Angeles Lakers on Saturday, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
Bryant had been gathering momentum with weeks of increased running, shooting and basketball-related activities that culminated with him rejoining the Lakers on the practice court on Saturday morning.
There remains no target date for his impending return, and Lakers.com's Mike Trudell says he participated in only light, five-on-zero drills. But still, a practicing Kobe is a practicing Kobe. If that's not enough to appease your need for hope, though, Kobe himself maintains he's recovering well.
"I feel like I'm ahead of schedule," Kobe told former teammate Rick Fox in an interview for NBA TV, per ESPN Los Angeles' Dave McMenamin. "If there was a playoff game tonight, I'd play. I'd play. I don't know how effective I'd be, but I would play."
Kobe. Playing. Hope. The three words go hand-in-hand. It may not seem like much, but that's what the latest developments are—hope.
Hope for the Lakers, hope for basketball fans in general.
Hope that more than seven months after suffering a devastating injury, Kobe is on his way back. Finally.