Bryant was considered a game-time decision because of his sprained ankle as well as battling the flu. Mike D'Antoni expected Kobe to warm-up pregame and then decide if he would participate in the game, but Bryant elected to not even test the ankle. Jodie Meeks will start in place of Kobe.
This is the first game of the season that Kobe has missed, playing in all 67 of the team's prior games. The Lakers travel to Phoenix to face the Suns Monday to conclude their back-to-back, but there has been no indication as to whether Kobe will attempt to play. The Lakers have a three-day layoff after Monday's game, not playing another game until Friday, which could provide a critical window for Kobe to rest his ankle and come back full strength.
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More on the Lakers:
- Roundtable: What is the Los Angeles Lakers' offensive identity?
- Pau Gasol injury: Out at least two more games
- Breaking down Jamison's dagger against the Pacers
- Jordan Hill injury: Could return by late April
- Buoyed by great role player performances, the Lakers stayed effective without Kobe Bryant
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