Kobe Bryant: Should the LA Lakers Star Play Overseas?
Time is swiftly running out for the 2011-12 NBA season to be saved. Neither side of the CBA negotiations is budging requests for the new deal. The owners continue to want smaller salaries for the players, and the players still refuse to limit their benefits.
With the coming season in much jeopardy, many players are looking into playing overseas. Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant is one of them.
While he is one of the favorites to make the jump to a foreign team, many feel he should not go through the trouble of doing so.
Here is the good and bad of him taking his talents out of the States for a season.
Good: Financial Opportunities
Kobe is nearly as popular in several other countries as he is in America. With that in mind teams are probably willing to pay him very handsomely, with ticket and merchandise sales likely to skyrocket with him around.
One team in China is reportedly prepared to offer him a deal worth $1 million per month.
His popularity would also net him a number of endorsement deals with big foreign companies
Financial security is one the top priorities for the players in during the lockout, as majority of them will not be paid in that time. Kobe would clean up very nicely in the fiscal department.
After 15 seasons in the NBA, Kobe hardly needs experience. But a change of scenery for a little while might do him good. He's always looking to improve his game in a creative way, and playing out of the country would definitely help him do that.
He can learn new things by playing a different style of basketball for a season as well as interacting with a fresh group of players and coaches.
The experience can also help keep him in shape and prevent any rust he may build up by sitting out.
Bad: Health Risk
The main argument people have against Kobe going overseas is that having time off could be beneficial.
In his career he has logged over 48,000 minutes in over 1,300 games, battled knee injuries, ankle injuries and finger injuries. Not to mention he'll be 33 later this month.
I guess he could use the rest. Not playing for however long the lockout lasts would remove the risk of further injuring his already banged-up body.
Those who don't want to see the five-time champ flee the country have a good point about him refusing rest and risking more affliction on his body.
But in a perfect world without a league lockout, Kobe would be playing anyway, piling up more mileage as well as taking chances on more injuries.
He has a very strong passion for playing basketball, and I see no reason for him to continue to play despite the NBA's coming work stoppage. Why deny him of one of the integral things in his life?
You can follow Nigel Broadnax on Twitter @BroadnaxWrites