Kobe Bryant May Play Pro Basketball in Turkey
(AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
It's beginning to look like the only pro hoops worth watching this fall will take place far from Staples Center.
With little progress being made to end the NBA lockout a Turkish professional team is in talks to sign Kobe Bryant. Istanbul's Besiktas club made an offer to Bryant this week according to the L.A. Times. Kobe is said to be meeting with Besiktas officials in Istanbul on Saturday, reports SBNation.
"At the moment there's a 50 percent chance that Kobe may come to Turkey," said Seref Yalcin, head of basketball operations for Besiktas, on Tuesday, according to Reuters.
The latest rumors have Kobe asking for anywhere from $500,000 to $1 million per month to sign with the team.
NBA players are free to play anywhere they want during the lockout, according to a press release issued Friday by FIBA, the world governing body for pro basketball.
New Jersey Nets All Star point guard Deron Williams has already signed with Besiktas for a reported $500,000 per month. Bryant would only play for the Turkish team if the player lockout, which began July 1, continues. Besiktas' season begins in late September.
Meanwhile Kobe to the States on Sunday to play his second favorite sport — soccer — in a charity event sponsored by Mia Hamm and Nomar Garciaparra.