Kobe Bryant Ends His NBA Career in Style

He scored an amazing 60 points in final game
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 14, 2016 2:47 AM CDT
Kobe Bryant Ends NBA Career in Style
Los Angeles Lakers forward Kobe Bryant gestures during the first half of his final NBA game.   (Jae C. Hong)

Kobe Bryant went out with a Hollywood ending to his remarkable career. Bryant scored 60 points in his final game Wednesday night, wrapping up 20 years in the NBA with an unbelievable offensive showcase in the Los Angeles Lakers' 101-96 victory over the Utah Jazz, the AP reports. He scored 23 points in the fourth quarter, posting his first 50-point game since February 2009 and rallying the Lakers from a 15-point deficit to win the final game of the worst season in franchise history. The 37-year-old came up with the fifth highest-scoring game of his career and became the oldest player to score 50 points in an NBA game.

"It's hard to believe it happened this way," Bryant said. "I'm still shocked about it." With the entire Staples Center crowd standing, Bryant drained a 3-pointer with 59 seconds left. He hit another with 31 seconds to play, putting the Lakers ahead 97-96. He finished with an assist before checking out for good with 4.1 seconds left in just the Lakers' 17th win. "The perfect ending would have been a championship," Bryant said with a smile. "But tonight was (me) trying to go out, play hard, and try to put on a show as much as I possibly could. It felt good to be able to do that one last time." Bryant, who took a career-high 50 shots, grinned as he said that he had been through "20 years of everybody screaming to pass the ball. And then the last night, they're like, 'Don't pass it!'" (The game is believed to have set a regular season ticket-price record.)

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