Kobe Bryant played his final game in Salt Lake City on Monday night, and as you might image, the fans in attendance were quite excited to see The Black Mamba one last time.
A couple of them even sniffed his sweaty shooting sleeve after Bryant tossed it into the crowd. (Gross.)
The Jazz gave Kobe a number of gifts, and played a neat tribute video during player intros.
— Utah Jazz (@utahjazz) March 29, 2016
Bryant suffered the worst loss of his 20-year career, as the Utah Jazz spanked the visiting Los Angeles Lakers 123-75.
Per the AP:
Rodney Hood will never forget the night Kobe Bryant requested to guard the second-year player because he was virtually unstoppable. That’s a huge compliment from the future Hall of Famer. […] Hood scored 30 points and the Jazz turned Bryant’s last visit to Utah into the worst loss of his career with a 123-75 victory on Monday night that matched the Lakers’ largest defeat in franchise history.
“We were just talking a little bit of trash,” Hood said. “He was just congratulating me on the season. I just told him he was the greatest of all-time. A guy I’ve been looking up to since I was a little child. … It was just a great night tonight. […] Those are memories I’ll forever take. Going back to Hawaii (during preseason). Tonight. Every single time I get a chance to play against him, that’s something I’ll remember after I’m done playing ball.”
Hood and the Jazz put the game away early in the first quarter with a 17-2 start. The second-year guard was 5 for 5 from the field for 14 first-quarter points. He had 30 at halftime, including a franchise record-tying eight 3-pointers, and fell two points shy of his career high for a game while Bryant face-guarded him in the second half and attempted to not let him touch the ball. […] “I just tried to choke plays off,” Bryant said. “If he catches it, then I’m killed, especially tonight because I’ve played way too many games in a row. I can’t move. If he catches it, he can go right by me. So I tried not to let him catch it.”