Kobe Bryant can't play to his full potential right now, and won't for a while -- so says NBA icon Jerry West.
West -- whose famous silhouette appears on the NBA logo -- tells TMZ Sports Kobe needs at least a few more games playing at full speed to get back to normal ... so Lakers fans will have to wait before the Mamba comes back in full force.
West says Achilles injuries are especially bad for basketball players because of all the cuts they need to make on the court.
For the record, Kobe appears to be doing just fine -- he rained down a respectable 21 on the Bobcats over the weekend.
Haters, Get Off Kobe's Back
... He'll Rebound from Injury
12/16/2013 12:45 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Get TMZ Breaking News alerts to your inbox