Kyrie Irving scored 26 points, LeBron James added 24 and the Cleveland Cavaliers topped the Los Angeles Lakers 120-108 at the Staples Center on Thursday night in the final meeting between James and Kobe Bryant.
This one was everything we could have hoped for.
Bryant and James went blow-for-blow in the first half, with the older Bryant actually getting the better of James.
Kobe fooled LeBron with one of his patented pump fakes and also took it to the four-time MVP in the post to the delight of the home crowd.
Bryant finished with 26 points off 11-of-16 shooting, going 3-of-4 from beyond the arc.
The game itself was also entertaining early on, with the Cavaliers—who were without Kevin Love—holding on to a 64-55 lead at halftime.
Cleveland, however, pulled away in the third quarter, taking a 95-82 advantage into the final frame.
The Cavs, who shot 52.9 percent from the field and a blistering 16-of-35 from three-point range, led comfortably the rest of the way. The Lakers shot 52.5 percent but only connected on seven of their 22 triples.
Cleveland will be back in the Staples Center on Sunday afternoon to take on the Los Angeles Clippers. The Lakers will host the New York Knicks that night.