Football

Kobe Bryant return will provide clarity for Lakers

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The LA Lakers will not know what their team is 'all about' until Kobe Bryant makes his long-awaited return from injury, according to general manager Mitch Kupchak.

Bryant has been out of action since April after rupturing his Achilles tendon against Golden State, and the 35-year-old has yet to begin intensive training.

In his absence, the Lakers have posted a record of 3-5 in the 2013-14 NBA season, and Kupchak admits he will not be sure of how strong his team can be until Bryant is finally available for selection.

"Clearly we don't know what this team is all about until Kobe gets back, and when he gets back, how is he going to play?" Kupchak told the LA Times.

"I know he's going to come back competitive. I know he's going to be productive. But that's when we're going to find out what kind of team we have."

Bryant's return was initially set at six to nine months when he sustained the injury but, as of yet, there is there has been no specific date made public with regards to when the Lakers expect to have him back in action.

He certainly will not be ready within the next two weeks, says Kupchak, who says Bryant still needs to get up to speed on the practice court before he can play competitively again.

He added: "I don't see that in the next week or two because you've got to be on the court. You've got to practice. You've got to play."

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