Lakers guard Kobe Bryant has seen it all in his 14 seasons in purple and gold, so the trade rumors about Carmelo Anthony coming to the Lakers for Andrew Bynum did not really phase him, according to a radio interview he gave with ESPN Radio L.A. Bryant declined to discuss the reports of a Melo-for-Bynum swap specifically, saying, “I don’t really address rumors,” but he did express his wish for Anthony to get what he wants.
“I always wanted him to be happy with whatever decision he makes and wherever he ends up,” Bryant said in the interview, in which he also discussed the Lakers’ NBA Finals rematch against the Boston Celtics tonight and L.A.’s struggles lately. Bryant referred to that highly anticipated game as “a kind of measuring stick for us.” The Celtics soundly defeated the Lakers, 109-96, in late January behind 32 points from Paul Pierce. Bryant scored 41 points, but Bynum and Pau Gasol netted just 23 on 8-of-19 shooting.
Overall, it sounds like Bryant is more focused on his on-court role which, as he put it, “is to manage the team that is assembled.” He’ll leave the General Managing to Mitch Kupchak, who he said “has done a fantastic job to this point.”