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Kobe Bryant I'm Never Playing Basketball Again ... EVER!!!

8/24/2018 1:22 PM PDT

Kobe Bryant Says He'll Never Play Pro Basketball Again

Breaking News

Straight from the Mamba's mouth ... Kobe Bryant says he's NEVER returning to pro basketball.

The NBA legend set the record straight in an interview with Rich Eisen ... saying "I will never come back to the game. Ever. I am here to show people that we can do much more than that."

Of course, Black Mamba already has an Oscar for his animated short film "Dear Basketball" ... and has a bunch of other projects geared towards connecting youth to sports.

"There's about a 0-percent chance I come back and play," Bryant says.

There were rumors Kobe could come back to the Lakers when LeBron James decided to move to L.A., and most recently about joining Ice Cube's BIG3 league when co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz said he was told by a source that Kobe was gonna play next season.

But, Kobe's rep chimed in on his hoops future to TMZ Sports ... saying "NOT True. 100% not happening."

Regardless, Cube told us on Wednesday he was still hopeful Bryant would take the BIG3 bait.

But, Kobe makes it clear -- it's just not happening.

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