Bryant works both ends in leading Lakers’ rally
DENVER – Kobe Bryant tied a season high with 31 points after missing a game because of a sore right shoulder, and the Los Angeles Lakers rallied from a 21-point, first-half deficit to beat the shorthanded Denver Nuggets 111-107 on Tuesday night.
Bryant also had five assists and played stellar defense to help bottle up the hot-shooting Will Barton, who had 23 points in the first half but added only two more after the break.
The 37-year-old Bryant announced last month he would retire after the season. He received plenty of cheers during his penultimate game in the Mile High City, including chants of “Kobe, Kobe” in the waning seconds.
• SWEEP MODE: Bismack Biyombo had a career-high 20 rebounds, leading the Raptors to a 103-99 victory over the Mavericks and a two-game season sweep.
• SAME OLD SIXERS: Marc Gasol scored 19 points, Mike Conley had 18 points and six assists and three other players scored in double figures for Memphis in a 104-90 victory over Philadelphia that dropped the 76ers to 1-29.
• SWEATING ONE OUT: The Pistons erased an 18-point deficit, winning 93-92 in Miami after Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh missed go-ahead shots in the last three seconds.
• NOAH OUT: Chicago’s Joakim Noah will miss at least two weeks after an MRI confirmed a sprained left shoulder, suffered in Monday’s loss to the Nets.