Los Angeles Lakers Rumors: Kobe To Advance To Full-Weight Running Is Just 'A Few Weeks' Away, Ready By Season Opener?

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Sep 20, 2013 10:23 AM EDT
Kobe Bryant
Los Angeles Lakers' Kobe Bryant (L) smiles after making a free throw while Metta World Peace comes towards him during the second half of their NBA basketball game against the Brooklyn Nets in Los Angeles November 20, 2012.(Photo : Reuters) "

Just a month ago Kobe Bryant posted a video of himself running on an anti-gravity treadmill, and now according to L.A. Daily News' Mark Medina, Bryant was seen running at 75 percent of his body weight on the treadmill this morning.

Los Angeles Lakers athletic trainer Gary Vitti expects Bryant to remain a "few weeks away" before moving to full-weight bearing running but added "there's no projected date" on whether he'll play in the Lakers' season opener.

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"He's doing well and has had no setbacks" Vitti said Thursday at his trainer's office at the Lakers' practice facility in El Segundo in a wide-ranging interview with this newspaper. "He'll be ready when he's ready. Nobody has a crystal ball on this thing."

The Lakers training staff led by Vitti and physical therapist Judy Seto and strength conditioning coach Tim DiFrancesco has concentrated on rebuilding Bryant's strength in his tendon, while also bringing strength to his legs, knee, back and core.

"He doesn't have injuries in the rest of his body" Vitti said of Bryant. "When a guy has been out for a long time that neuromuscular system shuts down and the nerves don't fire the muscles in the right pattern in the right way. We have to get this whole thing working again. Think of him as a Ferrari. He's a machine. If those pistons aren't firing in the right position and in the right pattern the timing is off. Other structures can be taking loads that aren't built for that. The rehab is not directly solely to the Achilles tendon."

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