Kobe Bryant claims he accepted his contract extension with the LA Lakers without even fighting to negotiate a better salary, despite the fact his earnings will marginally decrease from next season.
The 35-year-old will see his current Lakers deal expire at the end of the 2014 NBA campaign and, given his injury troubles of late, it did not appear to be a guarantee that Bryant would get a new contract.
However, it was confirmed on Monday that Bryant had agreed to stay with the Lakers for another two years, during which time he will earn $48.5 million and remain the highest paid player in the NBA.
This season, though, Bryant's salary stands at $30.5 million and, although his new deal represents a relative paycut, he claims not to have spoken to Lakers chiefs about the distribution of their cap.
"We had no conversation whatsoever," Bryant told reporters. "The only number that I saw was the one that I agreed to."
Bryant has not played for the Lakers since April after he sustained a ruptured Achilles tendon against Golden State Warriors, and the legendary shooting guard has thanked the franchise for showing faith in him with this extension.
"It makes me want to run through a wall for them," he added. "It kind of just adds more fuel to the fire of being able to come out and kind of prove to everybody that [the Lakers] are right and everybody else is wrong."