Today in sports: Kobe Bryant's Italian career could last for a single game, the University of Missouri wishes the Big 10 would call, and the next big thing in sports medicine feels like a truck is running over your arm.
- Representatives for Kobe Bryant and Italian pro basketball club Virtus Bologna issued a join statement today insisting they're still "working very intensely" on a one-month, $3 million contract for the Lakers guard, but club officials have already started to publicly discuss the possibility of bringing in Bryant in a more limited capacity, possibly for just one game. Virtus owner Claudio Sabatini offered Bryant a one-day contract worth $2 million to join to club for next Wednesday's game against Benetton Treviso. The idea, according to Yahoo Italia (via Google Translate) is to make the whole thing "a sort of 'Kobe night'" with Bryant playing in the game and also meeting with the team's sponsors, including "the number one Italian Pizzoli potatoes." [Yahoo Italia]
- The University of Missouri's "board of curators" voted unanimously Tuesday night to empower chancellor Brady Deaton to begin the search for a new athletic conference. They'll probably end up in the Southeastern Conference and if that's the case, the school won't be happy about it. One school official says Missouri would prefer to go to the Big 10, and was hoping to receive an invitation alongside Nebraska last year. That didn't happen, and now they're going to sulk their way through prom with the SEC. [Associated Press]
- When it comes to medical treatments sought by professional athletes, fans and the media tend to note only the stories involving steroids or trips to stem cell clinics in foreign countries. So it's easy to overlook the rise of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) treatments, which have quietly emerged as this year's go-to injury treatment with football, baseball, and basketball players. As miracle cures go, it's less frightening sounding than some of the alternatives: the treatments are built around a process of drawing and reinjecting samples of your own blood, which is weird and gross, but not prohibitively so, and the World Anti-Doping Agency lifted a ban on the procedure earlier this year. Players say it makes them feel better, while doctors like PRP for its "apparent safety" and the fact it "virtually eliminate[s]" risk factors. The one downside is the excruciating pain. Atlanta Braves relief pitcher George Sherrill says that after he received an injection to treat a sore arm "it felt like a truck ran over my elbow." [The Washington Post]