Report: Kobe Bryant Reaches Deal To Play In Italy

09.30.11 8 years ago 11 Comments

Even when it comes to rapping, Kobe Bryant has never been scared to fail. To him, trying and failing is nothing. So when talk of him playing overseas came up earlier this summer, we knew it was very possible. If any NBA star was going to look into it, it had to be Kobe. Turkey sounded nice, but it never worked. Then Italy showed up and now it feels right. It feels right that Bryant apparently reached a verbal agreement to play with the Italian club Virtus Bologna.

The deal, which is being reported as “95 percent done”, is for $3 million for the first 40 days of the Italian league season.

ESPN writes:

“We have reached an economic deal,” Virtus president Claudio Sabatini told a local radio station. “There’s still some things to arrange but at this point I’m very optimistic. I would say it’s 95 percent done.”

A person with knowledge of the negotiations told The Associated Press on Friday that the sides have settled on a $3 million contract for the opening 40 days of the Italian league season.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal has still not been signed.

Bryant is expected to be in Italy and ready to go by the middle of next week. Is this surprising? On one front it is. But remember, Bryant grew up in Italy and has always been a worldly person, especially early on in his career. Plus, he’s smart enough to fit in pretty quickly. There’s also an opt-out involved which will allow Kobe to return to the Lakers after the lockout is lifted.

Is everyone happy? Maybe… maybe not. Check out what Italian League player, and former USC Trojan Daniel Hackett told ESPN:

“The only way to stop a player that good is with a hard foul and he knows that,” Hackett said. “I’ve got five fouls to commit and they’re going to be the hardest five fouls I’ve ever committed.”

While the contract hasn’t been signed, the agreement is in place. We knew the game would change with this lockout. Now it appears Kobe might be making one of the largest moves yet.

How do you think he will do in Italy?

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