updated - September 18, 2021 Saturday EDT
Kobe Bryant salary is just one of the many topics experts and fans continuously discuss before the start of the 2015-2016 NBA season.
The Black Mamba signed a $48.5 million extension with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2013 after suffering from Achilles tendon tear and some think that amount is too much.
Fans and pundits alike think this is a bad move for the Purple and Gold as it gave them little chance to sign a marquee player.
For Los Angeles Lakers vice-president of basketball operations Jim Buss, Kobe Bryant's salary is more than just a payment for his services in the next two years. It is more of a reward.
"You give Kobe Bryant $50 million for two years," Buss told USA TODAY Sports when asked about Kobe's lucrative contract that will last until next year.
"Are you kidding me? What did he bring us? In this day and age, what did he bring us, for 20 years? And if that isn't what you're supposed to do, then I have no idea what life is all about."
Buss also went on to explain how Los Angeles Lakers love Kobe Bryant.
"The organization absolutely loves him. You know why? Because he has made a living, as we (have) with the Lakers for the last 20 years, because of this man," he said in the same interview.
"Magic Johnson carried us (to) this part (of their history) ... and Kobe Bryant has carried us for 20 years. So every person that works in that organization, why would they hate him? Why would they want him out of there? There's only a basketball or a Kobe hater that would want that. There's no other reason."
Buss went on to say how many Lakers fans approach and thank him for keeping Kobe in their backyard for the next two years.
"You pay the guy. You believe in the guy. If he ends up (staying healthy), that's fantastic. Well everybody (in the media) cut me up for that, but I'd say over 200 fans have come up to me and said, 'Thank you so much for letting my kid see Kobe Bryant for two more years.' And I'm like, 'You know what? I'm glad I can see him for two more years.'"
In 2014, Kobe Bryant reacted on talks that he should have taken a pay cut for the next season. This is after news broke out that Dirk Nowitzki decided to take less to lure big names to Dallas Mavericks.
"This is where players get themselves in a lot of trouble, which me in my 19th year I really don't care, so I'll kind of say what I need to say," said Bryant as per report by Yahoo Sports. "But I think you've got to look at the business of basketball. I think for a lot of writers, for a lot of fans, they have a very tough time distinguishing the two.
"This is a business, and you have to look at individuals and what they generate and the market that they're generating revenue in. And you can't separate those. People have a hard time separating that stuff. From a business perspective, you have to take that stuff into account and you have to try to, as a player, be in situations where it can be a win-win for everybody."
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