Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Nuggets Get a BIG Dose of Kobe!

The "MVP" chant was in full-force almost from the beginning for the Lakers' Kobe Bryant in their game tonight at Staples Center in game two of their best-of-seven playoff series against the Denver Nuggets... Unlike Sunday's performance where he had an off shooting game, #24 was simply "en fuego" all night long, scoring 20 points in the first quarter and 25 in the first half to help give the Lakers a 59-49 halftime lead.

The Nuggets though were not done, and actually went on a 21-10 run over the first 6:33 of the third period to take a one point lead at 70-69. The Lakers stormed right back though, going on a 20-9 run of their own to close the quarter, reestablishing their 10 point halftime margin. The Lakers withstood one last Denver run in the fourth quarter as Allen Iverson scored six points as part of a 14-9 run to trim the Lakers lead to 98-93 with 7:16 to play. At that point, Kobe decided to do what the only the very great ones are capable of doing - he almost single-handedly took over the game! Over the next almost five minutes, he scored 17 points during a 22-8 Laker run. Yes, it was VERY reminiscent of what #23 in the Chicago Bulls uniform did so many times in the 1990's... After scoring his 49th point with 2:22 to play in the game, Kobe was pulled to more MVP chants from the crowd. The Lakers then cruised the rest of the way to a 122-107 win to take a two games to none lead in the best-of-seven series.

As for Kobe's night, the 49 points only tell part of the story. He was extremely efficient from the field, making 18 of his 27 shot attempts including 5-for-9 on three pointers. He was also 8-for-9 from the foul line and even managed to dish out 10 assists when he wasn't scoring. Both totals being one short of career playoff highs. Pau Gasol had a double-double of his own, scoring 18 points and grabbing 10 rebounds. Luke Walton had another great game off the bench with 17 points, 7 rebounds and five assists.

Yes folks, Showtime is BACK in L.A.!!! The Lake Show featuring Kobe, Paul & L.O. travels to Denver this weekend. Game three of the best-of-seven series will be shown at 5:30 ET/2:30 PT on TNT. GO LAKERS!

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