1996-2010: Kobe Bryant's 25 Greatest Games In The NBA
In his 15 year career Kobe Bryant has averaged 25.3 points on 45 percent shooting, but he has had some good games, some really good games.
In my last story I wrote about Kobe's worst games of 2010. In this one I write about his greatest games EVER. I used a player production per minute method to get a number which shows how productive he personally was in individual games. It is close to Basketball References (Plyr. Sc.), which I invite any of you to check out.
I actually measured every single game (including playoffs) of KB's career to get this list. If he had a (Plyr. Sc.) of 37.0 or above it is on this list.
Kobe did this 25 times in in his career (only once in the playoffs)-—so these are his 25 greatest games ever.
Oh by the way, Michael Jordan had above a 37.0 (Plyr. Sc.)—125 times in his career and 43 times in the playoffs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
But this isn't about MJ (aka GOAT)—It's about KB—one of the top 15 players ever.
25: Jan. 04, 2004 (age 25) @ LA Clippers (SCORE #37.1)
In Kobe's 25th greatest game of his career, the Lakers lost to the Clippers. Kobe though, has a great game as he made 14/27 field goals (4/7 three's made) and 12/15 from the line. He added 10 rebounds and three assists and four steals to go with his 44 points in the loss.
24: Nov. 1, 2002 (age 24) @ LA Clippers (SCORE #37.6)
Kobe schooled the Clippers in this one by hitting an awesome 12/18 shots from the field (1/2 threes) and 8/8 from the line for 33 points. But this game rose high up his all-time greatest game chart because he added 15 rebounds, 12 assists, two steals, one block, four turnovers and three personal fouls in 41 minutes for a rare triple double. The Lakers won this one.
23: Dec. 21, 2000 (age 22) @ Houston Rockets (SCORE #38.1)
In this great KB game, he played 44 minutes and scored 45 points on 20/26 from the field (1/1 three) and 4/6 from the line. He added four rebounds, three assists and one steal and one turnover and one personal foul. LA beat the Rockets in this game.
22: March 23, 2007 (age 28) @ NO (SCORE #38.2)
KB went off for 50 in this great individual game. He made 16/29 shots (2/5 threes) and 16/16 from the line. Nice. He added seven rebounds, one assist, one block, one turnover and two personal fouls. LA won this one and Kobe played 47 minutes!
21: Feb. 11, 2003 (age 24) Vs Denver @ LA (SCORE #38.3)
Kobe scored a quick 42 points in only 31 minutes in this game. He shot well by making 12/20 shots (1/3 threes) and he was fouled like crazy in this one. He made 17/21 free throws. He had two rebounds, five assists and four steals too! He also had only one turnover in this win.
20: Dec. 15, 2006 (age 28) Vs Houston @ LA (SCORE # 38.3)
In this doozy of an individual effort KB scored 53 points on 17/38 shooting (5/8 threes). He added 14/16 free throws, 10 rebounds, eight assists, two steals, one block, five turnovers and one personal foul. LA won in double overtime and Kobe played an amazing 54 minutes.
19: April 22, 2008 (age 29) Vs Portland @ LA (SCORE #38.8)
It was the 75th game of the season and KB made 10/16 shots from the field (4/5 threes) and 12/13 from the line for 36 points in 41 minutes. He had 13 rebounds, seven assists, three steals, one turnover and three personal fouls and LA beat Portland.
18: Dec. 29, 2009 (age 31) Vs Golden State @ LA (SCORE # 38.8)
This was actually the last time KB had a truly amazing personal performance (over 37.0 player score). The Lakers beat Golden State and Kobe made 13/27 shots (2/6 threes) and 16/16 free throws. He had four rebounds, an awesome 11 assists, one steal, one turnover and two personal fouls in 43 minutes of play.
17: Feb. 01, 2008 (age 29) LA @ Toronto (SCORE # 38.8)
In 44 minutes of play vs. Toronto Kobe made 19/28 shots (4/8 threes) and 4/4 free throws. He added seven rebounds, five assists, one steal, one turnover, two personal fouls and 46 points. Lakers won.
16: April 13, 2004 (age 25) Vs G.S. @ LA (SCORE # 39.2)
KB played 43 minutes and scored 45 points in this one. He made 14/29 shots (0/6 threes) and 17/18 free throws. He added seven rebounds, eight assists, two steals, two blocks, one turnover and two personal fouls in the win for LA.
15: March 28, 2008 (age 29) Vs Memphis @ LA (SCORE # 39.2)
Memphis couldn't stop Kobe this night but they did beat LA in LA. Kobe did his part by making 19/37 shots (9/17 three pointers!) and 6/7 from the line. He added 10 rebounds, one assist, three steals, one turnover and four personal fouls for 53 points in 42 minutes.
14: April 14, 2006 (age 27) Vs Portland @ LA (SCORE # 39.3)
LA hosted and then hoisted Portland. Kobe had a great game with 17/28 field goals (5/10 threes) and 11/14 free throws. He added six rebounds, one assist, five steals and three turnovers and four fouls for 50 points in 44 minutes.
#13: Dec. 17, 2006 (age 28) Vs Wizards @ LA (SCORE #39.3)
In 47 minutes Kobe helped the Lakers but they still somehow lost to the lowly 2006-07 Wizards. He had an awesome personal game with 15/24 fg's made (7/11 threes) and 8/10 from the line. He added 8 rebounds, 10 assists, 1 steal, 1 block, 4 turnovers, 5 personal fouls and 45 points.
#12: March 2, 2008 (age 29) Vs Dallas @ LA (SCORE # 39.4)
In this overtime win, the Lakers pulled out the win thanks in big part to Kobe. He played 51 minutes and hit 15/27 fg's (2/3 threes) and 20/27 free throws. He added 11 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 steal, 2 blocks, 5 turnovers and 2 personal fouls for 52 points.
#11: Feb. 12 2003 (age 24) @ Denver (SCORE #40.1)
Kobe scored 51 in this win vs Denver. He made 15/28 shots (3/8 threes) and 18/20 free throws. He added 3 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, 1 personal foul in only 31 minutes!
#10: Nov. 30, 2006 (age 28) Vs Utah @ LA (SCORE # 41.2)
In only 34 minutes KB scored 52 points on 19/26 shooting (2/3 threes) and 12/15 free throws. He added 4 rebs, 3 assists, 1 block, 1 turnover and 5 personal fouls in the Lakers win.
#9: March 28, 2003 (age 24) Vs Wizards @ LA (SCORE # 41.5)
Kobe impressed his hero MJ in this one. Too bad 40 year old MJ was injured and on the bench for this great performance. KB made 15/29 field goals (9/13 threes) and 16/18 free throws. He added 5 rebs, 3 assists, 3 steals, 3 turnovers and 5 personal fouls in the win.
#8: March 22, 2007 (age 28) @ Memphis (SCORE # 43.2)
Kobe scored 60 points on the Grizzlies in a Lakers win. He hit on 20/37 fg's (3/7 threes) 17/18 free throws too. Kb added 5 rebs, 4 assists, 2 turnovers and 4 personal fouls in 45 minutes of play.
#7: April 23, 2008 (age 29) Vs Denver @ LA (SCORE # 43.2)
This is the only truly great personal playoff performance of KB's career. Jordan had 44 playoff games with over (SCORE # 37.0) and 125 in his overall career, but this is about KB's 25 times.
This playoff game amounted in a win for LA as KB shot 18/27 from the field (5/9 threes) and 8/9 free throws for 49 points in 42 minutes. He also added 4 rebounds, 10 assists, 1 steal, 1 block, 2 turnovers and 4 personal fouls. His one all-time great individual playoff performance!
#6: April 15, 2007 (age 28) Vs Seattle @ LA (SCORE # 44.4)
Kobe scored 50 in this one but did other things to make this one of his best personal performances ever. He played 42 minutes and made 18/25 field goals (3/6 threes) and 11/13 free throws. He added 8 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals, 1 turnover and 2 personal fouls in the win.
#5: Jan 14, 2002 (age 23) Vs Memphis @ LA (SCORE # 46.3)
In this 56 point performance KB made 21/34 shots (3/6 threes) and 11/12 free throws in only 34 minutes. He added 5 rebs, 4 assists,1 steal and 1 personal foul in the win.
#4: Feb. 02, 2009 (age 30) @ NY (SCORE 47.3)
This is the record in Madison Sq. Garden: 61 points, granted it was not against a NY team that played defense but it was KB vs MSG, not the scrubs from NY in 2008-09. Kobe shot 19/31 from the field (3/6 threes) and an awesome 20/20 free throws. He added 3 assists, 1 block, 2 turnovers and 1 personal foul. Lakers win.
#3: Dec. 20, 2005 (age 27) Vs Dallas @ LA (SCORE # 49.7
This is the game that many people remember when they talk about KB going off. He played only 33 minutes and scored an astonishing 62 points against the run and gun Mavs. KB hit 18/31 shots (4/10 threes) and 22/25 free throws. He added 8 rebounds, zero assists, 3 steals, 2 turnovers, 3 personal fouls and 62 in three quarters. Dallas lost.
#2: March 16, 2007 (age 28) Vs Portland @ LA (SCORE # 50.9)
This one went into overtime and KB and the Lakers came through with the win in the end. He hit 23/39 shots (8/12 threes) and made 11/12 free throws. He added 7 rebs, 3 assists, 3 steals, 2 turnovers and 3 personal fouls and totaled 65 points!
#1: Jan. 22, 2006 (age 27) Vs Toronto @ LA (SCORE # 63.5)
This is Kobe's greatest individual game ever. Yeah, he did it against the worst defensive team in the NBA in 2005-06 but what else would he do, since he was hot and the coach left him in? Might as well go for it. KB's goal was to score more than 69 points and get to Wilt Chamberlain's record of 100 points if possible. He scored 81. In 42 minutes Kobe made 28/46 shots (7/13 threes) and added 18/20 free throws. KB also added 6 rebounds, 2 assists, 3 steals, 1 block, 1 turnover and three personal fouls. This is the second most points scored in an NBA game.
NOTE: Michael Jordan's 69 point game actually got a (SCORE # 64.6) which is higher than KB's 81 point game (SCORE # 63.5). LOOK IT UP on basketball reference. Why?
Jordan scored 69 on playoff team Cleveland 23/37 fg's (2/6 threes) 21/23 free throws. He added 18 rebounds, 6 assists, 4 steals, 1 block. Also the game was an away game for Chicago.
KB had 81 points 28/46 fg's (7/13 threes) 18/20 free throws vs. non-playoff team Toronto at home in LA. He added only 6 rebs, 3 assists, 3 steals and 1 block.
So....KB's greatest game is less than MJ's, but KB still had some good ones.
With 25 career games over (SCORE # 37.0 or above) Kb falls way short of Jordans 125 career games with (SCORE #37.0 and above.)
KB has had only 1 Playoff game with over (SCORE # 37.0) and MJ had 44!!!!
But, nevertheless, good stuff KB, in your top 25 games ever. That is why you are one of the 15 greatest players ever.