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Jim Buss: 'Kobe Bryant can play beyond this season'

Los Angeles Lakers part-owner Jim Buss reveals that Kobe Bryant can stay beyond this season if he wants to.

Los Angeles Lakers executive vice president Jim Buss has revealed that veteran guard Kobe Bryant would be welcome to continue playing beyond this season.

Bryant is entering the final year of his contract, and the Lakers have suggested that they are approaching this season as his last.

"We are going to approach it like it is, but that does not mean it is. I am not going to sit there and say, 'This is it, Kobe, you are done,' because it is not my decision, it is his decision," Buss said, according to the Los Angeles Times.

"He just has to know, at that age, and that many miles on you, what is your role? We will explain the role, and if he still wants to do that and that is how he wants to go out, that is fine with me."

Bryant averaged 22.3 points, 5.6 assists and 5.7 rebounds per game last season, but featured in just 35 games due to injury.

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Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant rises high to dunk against the New Orleans Pelicans on April 22, 2011
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Olympic medal table header
CountryGold medalSilver MedalBronze MedalT
United StatesUnited States2248
Republic of KoreaRepublic of Korea2035
Olympics flagOlympic Athletes from Russia1214
30  Great BritainGreat Britain0011
Today's Olympic highlights header

Sunday's key events

· Wave conditions permitting, surfing will make its Olympic debut (11pm-8.20am)

· Another debutant sport at this Olympics, most eyes will be on American Nyjah Huston in the men's street contest as he looks to add Olympic gold to his four world titles and 12 X-Games golds. (12.30am-5am)

· History beckons for Jade Jones as she looks to become a three-time Olympic champion - something never done before in the sport prior to these Games (2am-1.45pm)
· Team GB's Bradly Sinden - world champion two years ago - is also going for gold in the men's -68kg category (2am-1.45pm)

· Already-legendary gymnast Simone Biles makes her first appearance of the Games in the women's qualifying event (2am-2pm)

· The first swimming medals of the Games will be dished out, with home favourite Daiya Seto going for gold in the men's 400m individual medley (2.30am-4.20am)

· Lizzie Deignan is among the Team GB team looking for success in the women's road race (5am-9.30am)

· Reigning two-time Olympic champion Andy Murray starts his title defence against Canadian hotshot Felix Auger-Aliassime (7am approx.)

> Today's schedule in full
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