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Sunday, December 16, 2007
Bryant will be game-time decision with groin injury

ESPN.com news services

Kobe Bryant will be a game-time decision on Sunday for the Los Angeles Lakers' home game against the cross-town Clippers, the Los Angeles Times reports.

The paper Saturday said Bryant could miss his first game of the year with what the team classified as a strained left groin. The All-Star picked up the injury late in the Lakers' 108-106 loss Friday against Golden State, and hobbled noticeably during the closing stages.

Bryant did not practice on Saturday afternoon and did not speak to the media afterward. Still, he told the Times Friday night he would play against the Clippers.

And he told The Press-Enterprise that he would work with his "therapy team" on Saturday to be sure he will recover in time for the game.

Coach Phil Jackson, however, expressed caution that Kobe would be available to suit up for Sunday's Western Conference matchup.

"That'll be a game-time decision," Jackson said in the Press-Enterprise story. "And it'll probably have to be my decision because he'll really want to play regardless."

Bryant is averaging 27 points and 5 assists per game, helping the Lakers to a better-than-expected 13-9 start.