Remembering Kobe Bryant’s last game: Black Mamba scored 60 points in LA Lakers vs Utah Jazz
Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter died in a helicopter crash on Sunday
Kobe Bryant played his last NBA game for Lakers in 2016
The Black Mamba was at his best, scoring 60 points for Lakers win
Kobe Bryant was the face of Los Angeles Lakers for close to 2 decades. At a time when NBA teams rarely found success with picking teenagers out of high school, Lakers took a gamble with Kobe and the rest is history.
Kobe finished high-school and decided to skip college and pursue basketball. He was not picked until the 13th draft in 1996 but Charlotte Hornets sealed the deal. He was immediately traded to Los Angeles Lakers with whom Kobe spent his entire career.
Los Angeles Lakers will be forever proud of that piece of business they did. Kobe Bryant led them to 5 NBA titles during a 20-year period that spanned till 2016. Kobe was named the NBA’s Most Valuable Player once and was 18-times NBA All-Star in what turned out to be one of the most impressive resumes in the spot’s history.
In Photos: The Black Mamba and his passion for basketball
Kobe Bryant played his last NBA tie for the Los Angeles Lakers on April 13, 2016. The Black Mamba, as he was famously called, had said at the start of the 2015-16 season that it would be his last as a professional basketball player.
Injuries had played a big role in Kobe Bryant taking that decision and a calf injury just before the season did not help his case.
Kobe Bryant announced his retirement with a heartfelt first-person story titled “Dear Basketball” for The Players’ Tribune.
“You gave a six-year-old boy his Laker dream
And I’ll always love you for it.
But I can’t love you obsessively for much longer.
This season is all I have left to give.
My heart can take the pounding
My mind can handle the grind
But my body knows it’s time to say goodbye,” Kobe Bryant wrote in 2015.
Kobe and the Lakers did not have the best of seasons but his last game against the Utah Jazz. Kobe scored a season-high 60 points in a vintage performance that took fans down the memory lane.
Fittingly, Kobe led Lakers to a thrilling win over Jazz. It was a treat for his fans who had turned up braving the hefty ticket rates to watch him in Purple and Gold for one final time.
Lakers were trailing in the 4th quarter but Kobe Bryant came up with a sparkling display, outscoring the entire Jazz side 23-21.