Kobe Bryant reaction to Dwight Howard trade

The Lakers revamped their roster by acquiring Steve Nash in a sign-and-trade with Phoenix, and with the addition of Howard, the NBA’s most dominant big man who was left off the Olympic roster following back surgery.

“I’ll probably play two or three more years and (after that) the team is his,” Bryant said. “I’m excited for the Lakers franchise. Because this is a guy who can carry the franchise well after I’m gone. So it should be his. He should be willing to accept the challenge.”

Bryant whispered as he spoke to a large group of reporters after the U.S. defeated Argentina for the third time in three weeks. He was trying to play it cool but after expressing disappointment in December when the NBA voided a deal that would have sent Chris Paul to the Lakers, Bryant couldn’t contain his excitement.

“All of a sudden, that gets pulled out from underneath us,” Bryant said of the rejected Paul trade. “Then (the Lakers front office) regroups and they come up with something that’s even better. It’s . . . it’s unprecedented.”

– Reported by Frank Isola of the New York Daily News