Kobe Bryant has been out of the NBA for over a year, and naturally he has been enjoying the retired life.
He was photographed by TMZ shirtless while in Portofino, Italy on vacation with his family, which prompted him to post, then delete, an Instagram photo of the picture acknowledging he is not in NBA shape anymore.
Probably the best hashtag of the summer is now #mambathick, which is what many other middle-aged dads will now use to describe themselves.
For good measure, he logged 47 points and 23 rebounds in his debut in Jamal Crawford’s Crawsover Pro-Am League last weekend in Seattle.
Porter is well aware of the attention and excitement that floats around him. Plenty of players in his shoes over the years have denied taking a glance at the latest mock drafts, but Porter is straight — he looks. He knows where he is ranked.
Mock drafts, um, yeah, I have seen them, he said. I have seen where people project me, I am not going to sit here and lie to you about that. But I don’t pay that much attention because the year has not even started yet.
That status comes with some pressure. There could be a crowd at the top of next year’s draft, especially with scouts having cast some love toward Slovenian shooting guard Luca Doncic and Texas center Mohamed Bamba. Porter does not deny that.
But if there were ever a time for a Western Conference team to give a star the night off on the road, wouldn’t Toronto be a logical stop to do so? First on the flow-chart, a coach can check off that it will be against an out-of-conference opponent, a game with far less ramifications on the standings.