Kobe Bryant appeared on the "Jimmy Kimmel Live" TV show Thursday and was asked when he's going to retire.
Bryant said it'd be "soon," without specifying. When the crowd groaned, Bryant smiled and said it has been a long time, rounding up to 20 years, and noted how he came into the league with a big Afro and now couldn't grow one if he tried.
Bryant, 34, is in his 17th NBA season, all with the Lakers -- and he said any future seasons will also be with the Lakers. Bryant said he won't go to another club. He is under contract for one more season after this one, and if Bryant plays beyond that there would be finances to figure out given how the Lakers intend to lower their payroll below the luxury-tax plateau at least in the 2014-15 season.
Bryant was wearing some sort of visible protection over his sore right elbow, which he said felt improved in the Lakers' Wednesday night victory in New Orleans.