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Lakers' Kobe Bryant indifferent about nearing 25,000 career points

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Perhaps the reaction will change once it becomes official. Perhaps it won't.

But at least after practice on Sunday, Lakers guard Kobe Bryant stood in front of the media expressing indifference that he is 30 points away from becoming the 15th NBA player to score 25,000 points, a feat he'll have a chance to accomplish in tonight's game against the Orlando Magic. 

He treated the question with the same stoicism as he did discussing his back ("It's OK. I'm close. It's stiff"), the Magic ("I haven't had a chance to keep up on them too much.") and whether tonight's game against Orlando rekindles memories of last season's NBA Finals victory ("Nope. Not really. We haven't talked about it too much today."

The same indifference can be said about Mamba reaching the 25,000-point plateau.

"No," Bryant said when asked if the upcoming milestone means anything to him. "It's not something I think about at all." 

Feel free to debate the merits of Mamba's comments. Lakers Coach Phil Jackson certainly had a different take, noting "I've seen him go for things. He's aware of these scorings in games, and it comes easy to him."

Additionally, both Mamba and Jackson had measured tones partly because the milestone's significance includes this: Bryant, at 31, will be the youngest player to reach the mark -- a misleading statistic given that Bryant went straight to the pros from Lower Merion High School in Ardmore, Pa. 

But here are some statistics that properly represent Bryant's standing in the scoring record books: Through 988 regular season games, he has logged 40-plus points in 103 of them,  50-plus points in 24 of them and captured the league's scoring titles in the 2005-06 and 2006-07 seasons. Bryant's 81 points against the Toronto Raptors Jan. 2, 2006, is the second-most points in a game behind Wilt Chamberlain's 100-point performance with the Philadelphia 76ers against the New York Knicks in Hershey, Pa. on March 2, 1962. 


To play off the fish-in-a-barrel analogy Bryant mentioned in the video above, the same can't be said for his shooting this season. He's had a monthlong avulsion fracture to his right index finger, an injury he was able to play through with and thrive until he aggravated it nearly two weeks ago. In a four-game stretch afterward, Bryant had a 37-of-111 clip followed by back spasms that kept him out of the fourth quarter in last week's loss against the San Antonio Spurs. His latest performance -- a 30-point effort on 10-of-20 shooting in the Lakers' 126-86 victory over the Clippers -- suggests he may be turning a corner with those aforementioned injuries.

Lakers forward Pau Gasol only expects Bryant's scoring to continue. After all, he just recently eclipsed former New York Knicks center Patrick Ewing for 15th place on the NBA's all-time scoring list, and is only 222 points behind former Lakers great Jerry West, who Bryant listed by name along with Michael Jordan, Elgin Baylor and Bob Pettit as other players on the scoring list he holds in high esteem. 

-- Mark Medina

Follow the L.A. Times Lakers blog on Twitter. E-mail the Lakers blog at mgmedin@gmail.com

Photo: Kobe Bryant is 30 points shy of reaching 25,000 career-point plateau. He is currently 15th on the NBA's all-time scoring list with 24,970 points. Credit: Tony Gutierrez / Associated Press

 
Comments () | Archives (17)

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I don't care so much about any statistic except one:

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!!!!

Jon K - you will see that i cut the credit line to five seconds instead of 10. LOL i actually like you pointed that out. didn't realize it definitely dragged out like it did when the tag line was 10 seconds....

I don't like this media pressure to get Kobe to score 30 points tonight.

I'd rather see The Two Towers score 45 points than see Kobe score 30 points tonight.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!!!!

"Lakers great Jerry West, who Bryant listed by name along with Michael Jordan, Elgin Baylor and Bob Pettit as other players on the scoring list he holds in high esteem."

This shows that Kobe Bryant is truly a student of the game.

Most players probably don't know who Elgin Baylor and Bob Petit are. They think the game was invented by Michael Jordan and Allen Iverson.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!!!

I agree with Jon K, the only stat that counts is rings. Who cares about personal stats except fantasy leaguers?
I want to see everyone healthy and ready to kick *** when the playoffs roll around. The regular season is fun, but it is really just a warm-up for the real season. Considering all the injuries, I'm pretty happy where we are at this point in the season.

Mark Medina,

Get it down to three seconds and I think we're in business.

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!!!

Jon K - lol geez. Is there anything else I can do for you today?
MM

Mark Medina,

You could get me the hell out of Northeast Ohio and back to my home in California.

How about that? Does that work for you?

What do we play for? RINGS!!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!!!!

Oh, Kobe... Anytime I think it's impossible for me to love and admire you more, you come up with something that makes me giggle inside :)

* and whether tonight's game against Orlando rekindles memories of last season's NBA Finals victory:
"Nope. Not really. We haven't talked about it too much today." *

You get my inner smile, Mamba :)
Your strive for constant victory totally makes me believe that you forgot about last year's victory as soon as this pre-season started.

I am also sure while all of your teammates maybe kept glowing in the memory of past glory (resulting in a bit of slow fazed performances around) you were simply focusing on the next laurel with all of your powers.

This parts you from anybody I have ever seen competing. Really.
I wish you to reach those 25000 point tonight just because I know they surely don't matter at all to you NOW. They will only if you win another ring, won't they Kobe?

You're such an inspiration.

I forgot to write this in my previous post... I owe a thank you to Wes, CornerJ and JonK who answered me on the music request :)
Thank you SO much. I have all Norah Jones, all Moby (I must be the only human beng who has at the same time the whole Moby discography along the entire Eminem's one... LOL!) and a fairly HUGE amount of Eagles but all the rest that have been adviced with will be purchased next Sunday. I will follow Milan Inter listening to what you adviced me to ;) (and CornerJ... you'll be surprised to hear that although I have witnessed Bocelli live 6th times, I own NO ONE of his records ;) It's definitely time to change that I guess ;))

I also wanna thank FEARless: your kind words about my... "sculpting style with words" made my man quite happy. He's the sculptor. He said he quite agreed with what you said actually :) Sharp and clever. It was delicate to the heart to read that :)

There's nothing wrong with Northeast Ohio Jon K., except that it doesn't have Cedar Point ...

Please stay in Ohio !!!!

Big Bomb,

I begs to differ.

http://tinyurl.com/cu69xe

http://tinyurl.com/cdne7g

http://tinyurl.com/ykc525y

What do we play for? RINGS!!!

Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.

GO LAKERS!!!

Kobe's assault or climb to 25,000 points has one meaning that is important, it's meaningful to and for the home crowd fans who have purchased his merchandise over the years.

Good luck Kobe and to the fans attending tonight's game against Orlando.

"Most players probably don't know who Elgin Baylor and Bob Petit are. They think the game was invented by Michael Jordan and Allen Iverson.

How true,. They also think Michael came out of the womb winning rings even though it took 8 years for him to win his first and when he won as an outstanding freshman he played along side Worthy and Perkins.

Basketball is and has always been a team game, David Stern notwithstanding.

I think an interesting aspect about Jerry West and Elgin Baylor being up in the upper echelon of scorers...I think West was as high as #3 all time when he retired...not exactly sure, but what's amazing is that you had these 2 players on the same team who's careers basically coincided in time, I believe Baylor started one year earlier, and West played a few years more....the Lakers and the especially the fans were truly blessed to live and watch the Laker's back then. I never saw much live action of a healthy Baylor, however, he is talked about in truly high esteem by those in the know. At one time, he was spoken of as one of the greatest five to ever play the game, however others have come along, and the memories of this man's great career and skills fade. I also think it is sad that he did not enjoy the success that the "Logo" achieved after he retired. Perhaps it would have been a better move to have taken a job with the Laker organization if available....but he went to the Clippers.....a bad move, think about if Kobe had followed through and crossed over to the Clippers during that summer of "WTF?"...... I just hope that Elgin Baylor lives a long and happy life, and he's probably a Laker fan, for sure now......

Saw where Shaq just passed 28K points, KB should pass him in about 4 years, maybe less...as little as 2....that will hold some interest....

Congratulations Kobe for reaching 25k career points! tough Lakers lost to Cavs they'll just beat them in the finals if ever the Cavs could make it. Good Luck! beat that LeBron!

Kobe Bryant 100%


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