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Julius Randle credits Kobe Bryant for helping him stay strong during recovery

Julius Randle - photo by Walter Cornett |

– photo by Walter Cornett |

The raw emotions hit hard, Lakers forward Julius Randle sobbing in both pain and disappointment over suffering a season-ending right leg injury in his first game.

But an influential person named immediately texted and called Randle. Bryant offered sympathy before quickly providing perspective on two debilitating injuries to his left Achilles tendon and left knee.

“ ‘My recovery starts at that moment,' ” Randle recalled Bryant saying in late October. “From then on, he checked on me every day and every week and made sure my head was in the right place and made sure I'm getting ready for next year.”

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