The Los Angeles Lakers rallied for a tough 98-95 victory Tuesday night, against the short-handed and visiting Sacramento Kings.
Kobe Bryant scored a game-high 32 points, and moved within 31 points of passing Michael Jordan for third on the NBA’s all-time scoring list.
Bryant led the fourth quarter comeback, playing mostly point guard.
Per the LA Times:
He seemed to be feeling every one of his 32,262 career points, wincing and grabbing his back throughout Tuesday’s game. […] “Yeah, absolutely. I’m hurting,” he said.
In the final five minutes against Sacramento, Bryant found Wesley Johnson for a three-pointer, dunked after a fastbreak pass from Jordan Hill, set up Hill for a layup and made all four of his free-throw attempts. […] “We got the right stops and we got it to our closer, Kobe, who made big free throws, made big plays, was a great playmaker tonight,” said Carlos Boozer, who had 15 points and nine rebounds in his second game as a reserve.
A loss would have been especially troubling for the Lakers (6-16) because DeMarcus Cousins, the Kings’ leading scorer and rebounder, sat out while recovering from viral meningitis. [….] “Less lottery balls!” said center Robert Sacre, a response to (Magic) Johnson’s view that the Lakers should keep losing. “No one wants to hear that. We’re not trying to tank.”