8 Oct 2011

Kobe Italy deal appears doomed

11:56 am on 8 October 2011

The Italian Olympic Committee president Gianni Petrucci has poured cold water on Bologna's attempts to sign global superstar Kobe Bryant on a short-term basketball contract.

The Italian side are in negotiations to try to bring the Los Angeles Lakers shooting guard to Bologna during the current NBA lockout.

Bologna are struggling to find the resources to fund a move for Bryant who is proving much more costly than they had at first anticipated.

And Petrucci is wary about the Italian team over-committing themselves just for a publicity stunt as Bryant's stay is unlikely to be of a sufficient duration for him to have much influence on their title chances.

While Bologna had proposed a near-$4 million deal to Bryant to play in nine or 10 matches, current reports in the Italian press suggest the 33-year-old American only wants to make himself available for one match, while expecting $2.5 million in return.

That would make it almost impossible for Bologna to generate the funds necessary to pay for the move.