Sharing is caring!Facebook2Twitter0Google+0Pinterest0Five-time NBA champion Kobe Bryant scored 60 points in his final game as he ended a glittering 20...
Five-time NBA champion Kobe Bryant scored 60 points in his final game as he ended a glittering 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers.
It was the sixth time the NBA’s third highest scorer had scored 60 points, beaten only by Wilt Chamberlain.
“You can’t write something better than this,” said 37-year-old Bryant, who helped the Lakers come from behind to beat Utah Jazz 101-96.
Basketball fans paid up to $27,500 (£19,315) to see Bryant’s final game.
He attempted 50 shots on the night, the most by anyone in an NBA game in the last 30 seasons.
From 1 to 48,655: Kobe Bryant’s career in numbers
|Kobe Bryant stats|
|Five-time NBA champion|
|Third on the NBA’s all-time scoring list|
|18-time an All-Star, 11 times first-team All-NBA|
|Tops Lakers’ all-time points, three-pointers, steals and games played|
Bryant led the Lakers as they overturned a 20-point deficit at half-time, scoring 23 points in the fourth quarter of his 1,556th game with the team.
Bryant, who made his debut in November 1996, finished with 33,643 career points – third on the NBA’s all-time scoring list behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38,387) and Karl Malone (36,928).
He checked out with 4.1 seconds left and hugged former team-mate Shaquille O’Neal as a sell-out crowd at the Staples Center chanted: “Kobe! Kobe! Kobe!”
The 18-time All-Star, known as the ‘Black Mamba’ addressed the crowd, saying: “I can’t believe how fast 20 years went by, this is crazy.
“What’s funny is the fact I go through 20 years of everybody screaming to pass the ball, then the last night they’re like ‘don’t pass it!’
“What can I say? Mamba out.”
Bryant, who was voted Most Valuable Player in 2008, the same year he won the first of his two Olympic gold medals with the United States, added: “To carry on the legacy and tradition of all the great Lakers that came before – it’s unfathomable. I can’t express what a dream this is.