L.A. Times: Kobe Bryant was able to mask it for a while, this business of an avulsion fracture in his right index finger forcing him to change his shot by putting more pressure on his thumb when releasing the ball.
But his shooting has taken a turn for the worse, as have the Lakers’ fortunes.
His shot total was creeping up in recent weeks, easily overlooked because he had been shooting a respectable 47% since injuring his finger Dec. 11 against Minnesota.
Then came losses to the Clippers and Portland, and Bryant can no longer say his shot count is justified by his accuracy.
He made 10 of 30 shots (33.3%) against the Clippers and 14 of 37 (37.8%) against Portland.
To put his Portland shooting experience into perspective, Bryant and Trail Blazers guard Brandon Roy each scored 32 points Friday, but Roy did it with 26 fewer shots, making nine of 11.
“It’s an awful lot of shots,” Lakers Coach Phil Jackson said of Bryant’s 37 against the Blazers. “If you look at the box scores between Roy and the points scored as opposed to how many shots were taken, it’s a great discrepancy.”