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Bryant relives 81-point performance
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On January 22, 2013 @ 8:00 pm In All,Wirenews | Comments Disabled
by Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY Sports
A year ago, I met with Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant to discuss his 81-point game against the Toronto Raptors on Jan. 22, 2006. It was for a story on the 50th anniversary of Wilt Chamberlain’s 100-point game.
Bryant’s 81 is the closet anyone has come to matching or surpassing Chamberlain’s 100.
One of the questions I asked Bryant: “Have you ever watched the replay of that 81-point game?”
He said no. “There’s nothing I could have learned from that game,” Bryant told me. “It was just pure fluke, a freak of nature-type thing.”
For the first time, he watched that game on Tuesday afternoon. NBATV replayed it on the seven-year anniversary.
Bryant had that seven-year itch to finally watch it, and Bryant live Tweeted while watching.
“I can’t believe I’ve never watched this game till now,” Bryant Tweeted.
And: “After my first bucket I realized their rotations weren’t sharp or early.”
And: “This game was the 1st and only game my grandma has seen me play as a pro, On my late grandfather’s bday no less#countonfamily”
Bryant responded to a fan who wanted to know what Bryant did with the shoes he wore in that game.
“@4yearsenior I sent them to the hall of fame,” Bryant replied on Twitter and @nikebasketball Tweeted, “Here is the proof @kobebryant @4yearsenior #countonkobe” with a photo of the shoes in the Hall of Fame.
When I talked to Bryant, I wanted to know why he didn’t watch it, just to see if he had a chance at 100 points.
“”If I did watch it, it would only (upset me) if I saw I really could have had 100,” Bryant said.
On Tuesday, Bryant Tweeted, “Watching the game now, the easy shots I missed, I could of had 100 pts! #countonkobe”
He followed that up with, “Down 14, I’m heating up…at this point I wouldn’t pass a kidney stone #countonkobe”
Let’s take a closer look at Bryant’s claim that he had a shot at 100 points. Bryant made 18-of-20 free throws. For the sake of it, let’s say he made all 20. That’s 83 points.
According to a shot chart at nba.com/stats, Bryant made 9-of-10 in … [For more on Kobe Bryant relives his 81-point performance: NBA A-Z, click here.]
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