Kobe Bryant Injury: Latest Update on Kobe's Christmas Day Status

Luis BatlleContributor IDecember 25, 2011

LOS ANGELES, CA - DECEMBER 19: Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers shoots a free throw during the game against the Los Angeles Clippers at Staples Center on December 19, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2011 NBAE  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

Los Angeles Lakers fans can breathe a tremendous sigh of relief.

According to the LA Times, the team will take the court with future Hall-of-Fame talent Kobe Bryant on Christmas Day against the Derrick Rose-led Chicago Bulls.

In the team's first preseason game against the L.A. Clippers, a DeAndre Jordan block that sent Bryant to the ground resulted in torn ligaments in his wrist. Despite still not at 100 percent, Bryant is set to play for the team.

Considering Bryant still has torn ligaments, his production will be limited for the Lakers in this one. Offensively is where it takes a toll on the team in this game, as the Bulls boast one of the more sound defensive units the league has to offer.

Last season, the team allowed just 91.3 points per game, a mark that ranked No. 2 in the NBA behind the Boston Celtics.

This athletic, physical group only added to their defense this offseason, picking up Richard Hamilton to play in the 2-guard slot alongside Rose. Throughout his career, Hamilton has been known for his scoring ability as well as his in-your-face defense that drives opponents up a wall.

Without Bryant in their second of two preseason games against Blake Griffin and the Clippers, it was both Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum that carried the scoring load for the team.

The team will of course be without the services of Bynum in this one, as he serves a four-game suspension to open up the season.

This means Gasol, Steve Blake and even Derek Fisher will have to make the most of their scoring opportunities on the night. Blake finished with 20 points in the team's final preseason game.

Bryant will still be Bryant, as the stage is set for what should be a matchup of epic proportions. Expect Bryant to play through the injury and produce solid numbers for this short-handed team in the frontcourt in this one.