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Exclusive: Stephen A. Smith Predicts Kobe Bryant’s Return

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Kobe Bryant is set to retire this summer … so says the Internet. Over the weekend, rumors spread that the future Hall of Famer would be hanging up his jersey after 17 seasons, but thankfully Bryant took to Twitter to shut down that nonsense.

“Really?? Me. Retire?? Soon, but not yet Vino still has work to do #35 #OG #kbvff” the Los Angeles Lakers star tweeted.

Bryant ruptured his Achilles tendon earlier this year, leading many to believe his NBA days were behind him. One person who didn’t exactly succumb to such fodder is ESPN commentator, Stephen A. Smith. “I think Kobe Bryant will try to come back approximately next January or February. He’ll be back for the second half of the season, post All-Star break, ready to roll,” Smith explained in an interview.

“That doesn’t mean he’ll have the same level of elevation, the same quickness or whatever the case may be … but whatever level of compensation is required to take place in order for him to remain an elite player in this game, he will do it. He’s got a tremendous pain threshold, his skills are unquestionable and his work ethic is unparalleled.”

Check out what else Mr. Smith had to say about the Black Mamba in our interview below.

EXCLUSIVES

It’s Litty! Migos, Jaden Smith & More Turn Up At ‘Bright’ World Premiere

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Netflix definitely made sure the world premiere for their new flick Bright was lit!

Before the films stars including Will Smith, Joel Edgerton, Edgar Ramierez and Noomi Rapace hit the black carpet, Migos surprised fans with a pop-up performance.

 (L-R)Quavo, Offset and Takeoff perform at the Premiere Of Netflix’s “Bright” at Regency Village Theatre on December 13, 2017 in Westwood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

Smith’s son Jaden also rocked the packed crowd at the Regency Village Theatre in Westwood.

 Jaden Smith performs at the Premiere Of Netflix’s “Bright” at Regency Village Theatre on December 13, 2017 in Westwood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

Artists featured on the soundtrack BRIGHT: THE ALBUM including Portugal The Man, Machine Gun Kelly, Ty Dolla $ign, Kiiara, Slushie, Grey, Dram, and Bebe Rexha also hit up the premiere.

Bebe Rexha and Machine Gun Kelly arrive at the Premiere Of Netflix’s “Bright” at Regency Village Theatre on December 13, 2017 in Westwood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

Will also snapped some fun flicks with his son Jaden before greeting fans and speaking with reporters including HipHollywood.

He told HipHollywood that he was super excited to reunite with his Suicide Squad director David Ayer for the film, and would “work with him whenever he wants to.

“I love his madness how he creates,” gushes Smith. “How he thinks about scenes, the way he works with actors, it’s some of the best psychological work of any director I’ve ever worked with.”

In the film Smith plays an LAPD cop in a mythical world of orcs, elves and fairies … and Ayer told us, he couldn’t think of anyone better for the role.

“We had such a good time on Suicide Squad together and this role is kind of perfect for him, it’s an edgy movie, buts it’s funny. He’s got the best sense of humor of anybody I know.”

BRIGHT debuts on Netflix December 22. Peep the newest trailer below.

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