Five memorable Kobe Bryant games
Nov. 3, 1996: At age 18, Bryant played six minutes off the bench in his first NBA action; at the time he was the youngest player to appear in an NBA game. He went scoreless with a rebound, a block and a steal in the Lakers' 91-85 home victory over the Kevin Garnett/Stephon Marbury-led Timberwolves. Bryant was taken 13th overall by the Charlotte Hornets in the 1996 draft and then traded to the Lakes for Vlade Divac.
Dec. 20, 2005: Scored 62 points in 33 minutes through three quarters of a game against Dallas. He had outscored the entire Mavericks team 62-61 entering the final quarter, which Bryant did not play.
Jan. 22, 2006: Scored 81 points against the Toronto Raptors. Wilt Chamberlain, who scored 100 points in a 1962 game, is the only player in history with more points in a single game.
Dec. 14, 2014: Moved into third place on the NBA’s all-time scoring list, surpassing idol Michael Jordan in a game against the Timberwolves at Target Center (with the crowd standing, he calmly hit two free throws in the second quarter). The game was stopped so Wolves owner Glen Taylor could present him the game ball. “It’s been such an evolution, now I appreciate the game even more,” Bryant said.
April 13, 2017: In his final NBA game, at the age of 37, Bryant scored 60 points (on 50 shot attempts) in a sold-out, nationally televised game at Staples Center — helping the Lakers defeat the Utah Jazz 101-96. Bryant scored 23 points in the final quarter alone. It had been seven years since his previous 60-point game, when he set the Madison Square Garden scoring record with 61 points on Feb. 2, 2009.