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Team: Star 'unlikely' to play on Feb. 6 road trip

Injured Los Angeles Lakers All-Star Kobe Bryant is expected to miss as many as nine more games because of a severely sprained right ankle, the team has said.

Bryant, who was injured Jan. 13, already has sat out
six games and could miss four home games and a five-game road
trip that begins Feb. 6, Lakers spokesman John Black told the Los Angeles Times for Friday's edition.

"As of today, it's unlikely that he'll play on the trip,"
Black told the paper. "We maintain hope that he'll be back soon.
He's a fast healer compared to most people, but that was a
severe sprain."

Bryant will travel with the team and continue daily
treatments.

He plans to skip the Feb. 20 All-Star Game in Denver if
the ankle has not healed. If he plays before that, though -- and doesn't aggravate the injury -- the NBA likely will expect him to participate in the showcase game. He is second in voting among Western Conference guards.

On Thursday, Bryant's attorneys said they had found out that the woman accusing the player of rape has reached a money settlement with the owners of The Globe and other tabloids that printed her picture and stories about her hotel encounter with Bryant.

Information from Reuters and The Associated Press was used in this report.