The Press-Enterprise (Jeff Eisenberg) reports: Kobe Bryant looked relaxed and rested Monday as he ambled around the Lakers practice facility during the team’s annual media day, cracking jokes with teammates and reporters and making funny faces for the armada of cameras that escorted him throughout the room. The Lakers star spoke with reporters on the eve of training camp about a litany of hard-hitting topics such as winning Olympic gold, celebrating his 30th birthday and why he’s just so gosh, darn smiley these days. “There’s just a lot to be happy about, a lot to be thankful about,” Bryant said. “We’re in a much better position than we were. That’s one thing I tell the guys — we’re the favorites for a reason. We’ve got all the tools here, all the pieces of the puzzle, and now it’s on us to make it work.”

The Press-Enterprise continues:  Bryant also took time to dispel the idea that he might opt out of his Lakers contract at the end of the season to sign with a European team for $50 million, a story originally sparked by an offhand comment he made to a reporter during the Olympics.