He may be the greatest point guard of all time and the man Kobe is trying to chase down in the pantheon of Lakers legends, but he wants to see the Mamba slither over to the sideline for the rest of the 2013-14 campaign.
"He’s got to (sit out the whole year). What is he coming back to?" Magic stated and then questioned in a discussion with Mike James of the Los Angeles Times. "He’s not going to be able to stop the pick and roll, all the layups the Lakers are giving up. He’s been hurt twice, give him the whole year to get healthy."
Well that's a different time frame for Kobe's return, especially considering Mike Bresnahan's report for the LA Times.
In that one, Bresnahan revealed that Mike D'Antoni was hoping both Kobe and Steve Nash would return for a Jan. 28 contest against the Indiana Pacers, one that comes on the heels of the seven-game Grammys road trip that might sink the team's record even further toward the bottom of the Western Conference.
MDA doesn't give much medical basis for his hope. But then again, neither does Magic.
The Hall of Fame point guard's reasoning basically revolves around the futility of this current roster. If the team can't play defense, doesn't have enough talent to compete and is plagued by injuries, why should the Mamba waste some of his remaining healthy games in a pointless effort to stay somewhat afloat?
His thinking would make sense for most players, but not for Kobe. The L.A. shooting guard would go insane sitting on the sideline, knowing that he could play basketball but not suiting up in an actual uniform.
He's not 2012-13 Derrick Rose.
Tadd Haislop of Sporting News hesitantly agrees, writing, "We all know Bryant won't let that happen. The 18-year pro is as competitive and motivated as they come. He also seems to have a pain threshold beyond that of other humans, so, yeah, he'll play."
To be fair, Magic's heart is in the right place.
He isn't trying to suppress Kobe's legacy for his own selfish desires, and he isn't trying to ensure that the playoffs won't feature a certain team that wears purple and gold. He just recognizes that attempting to crawl back into postseason contention with this current squad is a Sisyphean task.
But while he's trying to help out, Magic is forgetting about one crucial element of the story.
He's talking about Kobe Bryant.