By David Brickley – Los Angeles
The Lakers were up 88-70 going into the 4th quarter against the Sacramento Kings in the last game of the regular season.
Yet, it took Kobe Bryant’s 25 footer with four seconds left, just to get the Lakers to tie the Kings, and force overtime.
A lot of that had to do with the Lakers not executing the offense, as a team the Lakers only had three assist’s in the fourth quarter.
A lot of the lack of ball movement rests on Bryant’s shoulders. The “2005-07 Kobe” made an appearance in the games final minutes.
Back then, shooting a fade away 20 footer with three people on him, was probably a better option then a Kwame Brown hook shot.
But this is 2011.
At one point Bryant forced a fade-away when Fisher was wide open, another when Gasol had clear position down low.
Kobe was 2/2 in the fourth quarter going into the final four minutes of the game, and then he did this:
3:27: Bryant Missed Jumper
2:28: Bryant Missed Jumper
1:29: Bryant Missed 11-foot jumper
0:57: Bryant Missed 17-foot jumper
0:15: Bryant Missed 13-foot jumper
Then down by three points with four seconds left Kobe did this:
0:04: Bryant makes 25 foot Three Pointer
That’s what you saw in the highlights, and that will be the last heart breaking moment that the Sacramento fans witness, as the Kings head to Anaheim.
For some reason, on the final day of the season, Kobe reverted back to the Smush Parker days.
Phil Jackson spoke about it at Thursday’s Presser:
“The way he played the last three minutes of the game, last night, I wasn’t happy with that. That’s certainly not the way we want to play basketball. Of course he made the shot that tied the game, but I think that was the sixth one he had taken in that process…we have to corral some of the things we do that are errant behaviors.”
Hopefully Kobe learned his lesson, on the final regular season game of the 2011 season.
The only way the Lakers will win another title, is if everybody on the team contributes.
Don’t get me wrong it was great seeing Kobe drop 81 points on the Raptors, and win a couple of scoring titles.
But back then he didn’t win championships.
(David Brickley is the host of the Voice of the Nation, check out recent shows, exclusive interviews, and more over at LakersPodcast.com)