Basketball - Kobe comeback further delayed

Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant's return to the court has been pushed back another two to four weeks, according to a report.

Bryant recently said he would return from a knee injury by the All-Star Game on February 16 but would allow someone more deserving to play after he was voted in. He has played just six games this season.

The fractured knee he sustained on December 19 was initially expected to keep him out six weeks, putting his return at around January 30. However, the setback means he will not be back until perhaps late February.

The Bleacher Report claims that Bryant's discomfort in the knee is such that he will not even have an MRI or any other diagnostic procedure when he visits team doctor Steve Lombardo on Tuesday evening.

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Deputy commissioner Adam Silver will recommend to the NBA's Board of Governors that Mark Tatum succeed him when he takes over as commissioner, according to multiple reports.

Commissioner David Stern is retiring and Silver will succeed him on February 1. Tatum is the NBA's executive vice president of global marketing partnership.

Tatum has worked in the NBA since 1999. He oversees marketing for the NBA, WNBA, NBA Development League and USA Basketball. He is the main point person with some of the NBA's biggest sponsors, including Coke, Nike and Gatorade.

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The Phoenix Suns have signed guard Leandro Barbosa for the rest of the season.

Barbosa, 31, played nine games over the course of two 10-day contracts and is averaging 8.7 points, 2.2 rebounds and 2.0 assists in 21.4 minutes this season.

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The Philadelphia 76ers have assigned guard Lorenzo Brown to the Delaware 87ers of the NBA Development League.

This is Brown's fifth assignment to Delaware this season, where he has averaged 18 points, seven assists and five rebounds over eight games. He has also played 19 games for the Sixers.