HONOLULU -- With the Lakers finishing out of the playoffs for the first time in his career, Kobe Bryant had an entire summer to go through every scenario that could await him on the basketball court: From chasing after point guards to posting up down low.
A week into training camp, though, Bryant's role in Phil Jackson's offense and defense has become more defined. The changes will be anything but cosmetic to those who remember how Jackson used Bryant in his previous five years as coach.
On offense, Bryant will move from the backcourt, where he shared the responsibility of bringing up the ball and initiating the offense, to the wing, a position that will allow him to better size up defensive weak points and use his size to drag a defender into the post.
The wing also should give Bryant more opportunities as a scorer, though he had little trouble putting up 40-point games in his previous role. Bryant also said moving to wing should help him conserve energy, since he won't have to handle the ball as much.
Bryant described the wing on Sunday as "more of a striking position." He has spoken highly of Jackson's new version of the triangle offense, one that will have more flexibility than when Shaquille O'Neal was anchored at center.
"Everybody will be truly interchangeable," Bryant said. "We'll be moving pieces of the puzzle around more so than we did in the past and see if that works for us.'
Jackson also said he would like to see Bryant return to the form that made him a perennial all-defensive team selection.
"I thought last year, Kobe had really a down year defensively," Jackson said. "He was trying to do a lot, trying to get the ball back a lot of times. That he doesn't have to do with this team as much. We're going to help each other out more.'
Jackson suggested Bryant might be asked to defend opposing point guards more than he did last season for Rudy Tomjanovich. His first opportunity, Jackson said, could come against Baron Davis in Tuesday's exhibition opener against Golden State.
"We'll probably mix it up a little bit, depending on who we're playing, what we want to do defensively that night," Bryant said. "Some nights, I'll probably be on the ball, some nights I'll be off the ball. Some nights, I'll be a roamer."
Jackson also could see Tuesday how Smush Parker and Aaron McKie handle Davis and leave Bryant on shooting guard Jason Richardson in a more traditional matchup.
The Lakers are expecting rookie center Andrew Bynum (abdominal strain) and guard Laron Profit (strained calf) not to play in their first two exhibition games.
Forward Lamar Odom took the first blow to his surgically repair left shoulder and was uninjured.
Ross Siler can be reached at (818) 713-3607.