Looking at Kobe Bryant‘s numbers from the last 2 games alone is mind blowing: 41+ points and 12 assists. Those numbers on a box score stand out like Dwight Howard playing on the jungle gym with preschoolers during recess.
The amazing part is that the numbers themselves can’t possibly explain the extraordinary circumstances in which those numbers came together. The Lakers down huge in both games going into the 4th quarter, where defeat seemed eminent, every one of those points and assists were needed for the Lakers to snatch a win from the proverbial hands of defeat.
Fade away desperation 3 pointers with the clock ticking away.
With 2 defenders drapped all over him.
With multiple defenders denying him the ball.
It didn’t matter in these last 2 games, Kobe was not going to be denied. We have probably said the term of willing a team to victory when speaking of Kobe’s performances in the past; in many of those cases we used it as a hyperbole. In the case of the last 2 games, willing the team to a win is an understatement.
After 17 years of seeing the amazing feats of Kobe Bryant, at this point nothing should surprise those of us that have followed his entire career. Yet, here we are today, in complete and utter awe of what he has just done.
A game of 40+ points and 12+ assists is actually not as rare as you might think. Since the 1985-86 season, which is as far back as basketball-reference.com game finder will go, there have been 39 of them including playoff games. Even players like Ramon Sessions and Devin Harris have put together games of 40+ points and 12+ assists.
However, nobody has done it in back to back games since Michael Jordan and that was almost 24 years ago. The difference being that Michael Jordan was a vibrant pup in the league at the age of 26 years old when he pulled off his back to back 40+ and 12+ assists game. As we all know, Kobe Bryant is 34 years of age and in his 17 NBA season.
The Los Angeles Lakers play the Chicago Bulls today and Lakers fans are hoping that that 40+ points and 12+ assists game is not needed from Kobe Bryant to again, lead a charge from behind. However, there is that peace of mind that if that or anything else is needed for a win, Kobe Bryant is going to lay it all on the floor to get it done. After the last 2 games, nobody should be surprised of whatever it is that Kobe does on the basketball court going forward. With Kobe Bryant though, we can almost guarantee that we’ll be in awe of him again.