ESPN: With Spike Lee’s documentary on Kobe Bryant being shown during the Tribeca Film Fest, we thought we’d look at the top ten moments that have defined Kobe’s basketball career. Again … his basketball career.
10. April 30, 2006: Game 4 vs. Phoenix. The “More than Just ‘The Shot’” Game.
Down by five with 7 seconds left in regulation, his layup at the first buzzer caused an overtime. Then 5 minutes later … he hit one of the most demoralizing shots in NBA history. The Suns never — even today — really recovered from that down-by-one, top-of-the-circle, pull-up dagger at the buzzer in overtime that Kobe canceled them with. He put the Lakers up 3-1 in that series, eliminating all hopes of a title for Phoenix. Then and now …
9. January 22, 2006: “81.”
We know Wilt scored 100, but Kobe came only 19 points shy on 17 fewer field goal attempts and 12 fewer free throw attempts, played six fewer minutes and didn’t outsize the people guarding him by 5 inches and almost 45 pounds. This became the “new” standard.