PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Kobe Bryant’s NBA career will reach the two-decade mark.
The Lakers signed Bryant to a two-year contract extension, the team announced today. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Bryant’s contract expires at the end of this season. He has not played in a game this year, as he recovers from a torn Achilles suffered at the end of last season.
“This is a very happy day for Lakers fans and for the Lakers organization,” Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchack said in a press release. “We’ve said all along that our priority and hope was to have Kobe finish his career as a Laker, and this should ensure that that happens. To play 20 years in the NBA, and to do so with the same team, is unprecedented, and quite an accomplishment. Most importantly however, it assures us that one of the best players in the world will remain a Laker, bringing us excellent play and excitement for years to come.”
The contract will cover seasons 19 and 20 for Bryant in the NBA.
Though the Lakers did not announce terms of the deal, it is being reported that Bryant will be the highest paid player in the NBA. Bryant will be paid about $30 million this season. The highest paid player next season would put him minimally at north of $24 million.
ESPN’s Chris Broussard is reporting the deal is worth $48 million over the next two years.