LOS ANGELES, USA - Kobe Bryant, who guided the Los Angeles Lakers to the NBA championship last month, decided not to nullify the last two years of his contract and will stay with the squad, the Lakers said on Wednesday.
Bryant, the Most Valuable Player of the NBA Finals triumph over Orlando, had until Tuesday to make himself an unrestricted free agent by dumping the deal.
Staying with the Lakers means Bryant's agent and the club will talk over a contract extension that would bring the backcourt playmaker 23 million dollars next season and give him the chance to opt out of the deal next June.
Bryant had tipped his hand two weeks ago by saying he would not leave the team upon which he has played for his entire 13-year NBA career, one which he has inspired to four titles.
'I'm not going anywhere,' Bryant said on June 19. 'I know I ain't going nowhere, so it's just a waste of our breath just talking about it.'