Blog Entry

Kobe Bryant offered $6.7 million by Italian team

Posted on: September 23, 2011 2:43 pm
Edited on: September 23, 2011 2:54 pm
Posted by Ben Golliverkobe-bryant-drive

There's a new leader in the clubhouse, and it should come as no surprise that it's Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant.

The Associated Press reports that Bryant, the NBA's highest-paid player, has been offered a $6.7 million contract to play for Virtus Bologna of the Italian Serie A basketball league for a season. That figure is the largest reported offer made to an NBA player during the ongoing NBA lockout. 
The Los Angeles Lakers superstar spent part of his youth in Italy while his father played there. He speaks Italian, prompting Bologna to hope he might return if there's an NBA lockout.

Virtus Bologna general manager Massimo Faraoni tells The Associated Press he's been on conference calls between Bryant's agent, Rob Pelinka, Bologna president Claudio Sabatini and main sponsor Canadian Solar, which would provide the cash for such a deal.

"I think the fact that he's lived in Italy makes this appealing to him," Faraoni said.

Virtus has given Bryant four different contract options, stretching from the one-year deal to two-month and one-month options, and a per-game deal that would come out to $739,640 per home game.

Bryant's father, Joe "Jellybean" Bryant, played in Italy with Rieti, Reggio Calabria, Pistoia and Reggiana from 1984-1991. The elder Bryant now coaches the Los Angeles Sparks in the WNBA.
This offer, like previously reported short-term offers from Virtus Bologna, includes an opt-out clause should the NBA finally reach a new labor agreement with the National Basketball Players Association.

The size of this offer trumps deals given to New Jersey Nets All-Star point guard Deron Williams, who signed a deal that reportedly could pay him up to $5 million to play for Besiktas of Turkey, and free agent forward Kenyon Martin, who recently signed a Chinese Basketball Association record deal totalling $3 million to play in China for Xingiang Guanghui. Bryant has previously received reported offers or interest from Besiktas and China but those offers were not as clear and firm as this offer appears to be. 

By comparison, the $6.7 million on the table from Virtus Bologna equates to 26.7 percent of what he was set to be paid by the Lakers next season. Bryant was set to make an NBA-high $25.2 million during the 2011-2012 NBA season and is scheduled to make $27.8 million in 2012-2013 and $30.5 million in 2013-2014.

Since: Sep 16, 2011
Posted on: September 26, 2011 1:21 pm

Kobe Bryant offered $6.7 million by Italian team

I absolutely love sports. However it makes me sick to think about the fact these guys are getting paid the millions they are to play SPORTS!!!

Since: Aug 19, 2006
Posted on: September 25, 2011 7:59 pm

Kobe Bryant offered $6.7 million by Italian team

 And ps: MR. 'Knowledge', I was talking about last years team salary, not next seasons or the season after that. We dont know what the Lakers will go out and spend yet do we? Let's just hope for a hard cap.

Since: Aug 19, 2006
Posted on: September 25, 2011 7:57 pm

Kobe Bryant offered $6.7 million by Italian team

Rewarding your over the hill player with a long term contract is hardly a smart move. Teams do pay big bucks for their star player, but not at his age. He's already being overpaid and it's only gonna get worse over the next 3 seasons. Good luck competing if the owners get what they want (a hard cap)

Since: Sep 25, 2011
Posted on: September 25, 2011 12:03 pm

Kobe Bryant offered $6.7 million by Italian team

Well Richyriches, If you know anything about basketball, The NBA or Player contracts you'd know that the way Kobe's contract is set up is very typical of a Franchise, superstar player.  It IS a lot of money and it is at a time when his individual stats may and i say MAY be slipping due to age.  However the Lakers don't mind rewarding a may for a career that has been extra ordinary.  And just to correct your erroneous facts about the top salaries in the league... Miami is the number 6 highest team payroll in the league for next season and will be the number one highest team payroll for the next 4 years if LBJ, Wade and the crew stay together and no one else tries to build an allstar ladden non championship team.Laughing

Since: Aug 19, 2006
Posted on: September 24, 2011 5:11 pm

Kobe Bryant offered $6.7 million by Italian team

Wow, the Lakers are going to be sitting pretty in 2012 and 2013... That's a huge chunk of the teams salary going to a player clearly on the downside of his career. Kobe could very well be out of the top 15 in scoring in 2013 and still be making the most in the league. Good thing the NBA doesn't have a hard salary cap, otherwise the Lakers would struggle to fit under the cap and wouldn't be able to outspend the rest of the league (and still have their fans whine about the Heat roster, which btw is 18th highest in the league I believe) They'd have to find a way to deal Kobes albatross of a contract. 

Since: Sep 24, 2011
Posted on: September 24, 2011 2:45 am

Kobe Bryant offered $6.7 million by Italian team

My daughter just did an interview with the first NBA player to make a million dollars a year!! You guys should read his take on Kobe's offer to play overseas!!

Since: Jul 22, 2010
Posted on: September 24, 2011 2:11 am

Kobe Bryant offered $6.7 million by Italian team

Virtus Bologna?  Is Oscar Meyer coaching this team?  Does Kraft own this or what? lol   Kobe is not going to play over seas.  I don't blame the younger guys, because I would if I was one of them.  Kobe just wants another ring, no real "pull" to make him jump ship.  He just wants the 6th, for the Jordan finger, not to play for a team that sounds like beef by products. lol

Since: May 13, 2011
Posted on: September 23, 2011 10:53 pm

Kobe Bryant offered $6.7 million by Italian team

im sure he needs the money who cares why am i even reading this much less responding to it i really need to get a life

Since: Dec 13, 2009
Posted on: September 23, 2011 9:12 pm

Kobe Bryant offered $6.7 million by Italian team

He clearly does not know how to deal with the Chinese.  He couldn't be a bigger star in China right now.  If he played for Yao's team in Shanghai, that would really make basketball news to last.  But, in China the news of other teams don't mean a thing if it isn't NBA.

Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: September 23, 2011 4:59 pm

Kobe Bryant offered $6.7 million by Italian team

I'm sure if he cuts spending a bit, maybe eats at home little more often he can make the $7 million work for him.  All the ladies in the house might take issue with it, but they can manage.  lol !

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or