for this game

Bryant hits 60 points as Lakers edge Grizzlies

Mar 23, 2007 - 5:16 AM MEMPHIS, Tennessee (Ticker) -- The Memphis Grizzlies became the latest victim in Kobe Bryant's attack of the half century mark.

Bryant scored 60 points - his third consecutive game of at least 50 - as the Los Angeles Lakers posted a 121-119 victory over the lowly Grizzlies.

The 6-7 superstar connected on 20-of-37 shots - 3-of-7 from 3-point range - and made 17-of-18 free throws to post his 17th career 50-point performance, tying Hall of Famer Elgin Baylor for most all-time in franchise history.

"I mean, it's special because it's coming off three straight wins," Bryant said. "This is a stretch where we've really got to make up some ground and get our rhythm back on this trip. I'm doing my part, and other guys are stepping up and doing theirs as well."

Bryant also became the first Laker to register three straight contests with at least 50 points since Baylor did so during the 1962-63 campaign. Wilt Chamberlain and Michael Jordan are the only other players in NBA history to accomplish the feat.

"It's special. Growing up, I idolized all of them, from Wilt to MJ to Elgin and everybody else," Bryant. "It's a tremendous honor for me to be in that same class with those guys in terms of being in the history books. I don't know what else to say except it's truly a tremendous honor."

"(Kobe) came out really aggressive," Lakers forward Lamar Odom said. "When he comes out agressive like that and he's hitting that pull-up. I mean, we've seen him get 81 before, so it's not surprising. It's a blessing to be on the court when he's feeling like that, being a part of history."

In two wins at the Staples Center this past weekend, Bryant netted 65 points against the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday, then buried the Minnesota Timberwolves for 50 one day later.

"I just feel like guys are finding me," Bryant said. "It's not like I'm taking difficult shots outside of a couple, but I'm already in rhythm when I take those. To get in rhythm, I need to get great looks, great picks and great passes. You can't do that without the help of your teammates."

A nine-time All-Star, Bryant also added his name to the league record books, tying Jordan for second all-time for the most 60-point games with four.

"(Kobe's) in a league all to himself," Laker coach Phil Jackson said. "If he smells blood in the water, he's going to go after you. That's what you admire in Kobe, that he's going to attack and be in that mode and continue to go at a team until you take him out of the ball game."

This rivals Bryant's most impressive display of scoring since he poured in at least 40 points over a nine-game stretch during 2002-03 season.

"He's (Bryant) really good," Memphis forward Mike Miller said. "He's probably the best player in the league. There's not much you can do when he's going like that. He's who hits and makes their shots, and got it going early."

Bryant looks to continue his streak on Friday, when the Lakers visit the New Orleans Hornets. The defending scoring champ is averaging 23.1 points per game for his career in the series.

Odom's ally-oop to Bryant, who converted the three-point play, sparked an 11-4 surge as Los Angeles grabbed a 103-95 advantage with 8:40 remaining in the fourth quarter.

Dahntay Jones' layup helped the Grizzlies pull within 111-109 at the 4:28 mark. But Shammond Williams hit a 3-pointer from the corner, then found Bryant for a jumper in the lane to make it a seven-point edge with 3:43 left.

Odom collected 20 points and 15 rebounds and Luke Walton scored 11 for the Lakers, who have won three games in a row since their season-high seven-game losing streak.

Pau Gasol had 35 points and 15 rebounds and Miller scored 33 for Memphis, which finished its five-game homestand with a dismal 1-4 showing.

"I was pleased with our intensity level," Memphis interim coach Tony Barone said. "We came out and played with high intensity for most of the game. We had a couple lapses on long rebounds when they ran them down and we didn't, but for the most part, I thought our intensity was good."

  • mark playoff push, plus jackson telling him to be agressive? i think we're going to see a lot more of this.

    Lakers vs. GrizzliesMar 23 2:12 AM

  • NBA
    LA LAKERS 121

    Mar 22 10:38 PM
  • 25
    RUWTbot Added 25 roots

    Lakers vs. GrizzliesMar 22 10:25 PM

  • NBA
    LA LAKERS 92

    Mar 22 9:59 PM

  • NBA
    LA LAKERS 60

    Mar 22 9:33 PM

  • NBA
    LA LAKERS 34

    Mar 22 8:34 PM