Kobe Bryant rules out Olympics participation

Bryant rules out Olympics participation
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Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant confirms that he will not participate in this year's Olympic Games in Rio.

Kobe Bryant has revealed that he will not participate in this summer's Olympic Games in Rio and will instead end his playing career with the Los Angeles Lakers.

The Lakers legend will retire at the end of the current season after a record-breaking 20 years with the California side and, despite previously outlining his intention to compete for a third Olympic gold with the USA men's team, has now had a change of heart about his swansong.

"I think it's the young guys' turn to play and perform," Bryant told reporters on Saturday. "I've been fortunate enough to win two gold medals so I've had my moment.

"I'll watch from afar, I'll support from afar and if they want me to come down and speak to the guys, I will, but that's about it.

"I think as beautiful as it would be to play for our country, when I say my last game is going to be my last game, I'm going to retire, then that's it It's not like I'm going to walk off the stage and then [say], 'But I'm going to come right back for a minute. Hold on one second.' You know what I mean? I think it's pretty sweet to have the final game be in a Laker uniform and support the players from afar."

Bryant, who is the all-time leading scorer in Lakers franchise history, is expected to feature in the side's final regular-season game against the Utah Jazz on April 13.

LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers smiles after a play in the first half against the Atlanta Hawks during Game Four of the Eastern Conference Finals of the 2015 NBA Playoffs at Quicken Loans Arena on May 26, 2015
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