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Friday, December 01, 2006

Kobe netted 52 to beat Jazz

Kobe Bryant had a very effective performance, as he scored a season-high 52 points, including 30 in the third quarter. With this help, Lakers beat the Utah Jazz 132-102 Thursday.

It's important to notice that the 30-point quarter tied Bryant's own Lakers record set last season when he finished with 81 points against Toronto. George Gervin had 33 in a quarter for San Antonio in 1978.

Kobe Bryant topped the 50-point plateau for the 12th time in his career and finished 19-of-26 from the floor and 12-of-15 from the line in his highest scoring match since he had 81 against the Raptors on 22 January last season.

The talented player led the Los Angeles Lakers against the first place Utah Jazz on Thursday night.

We must consider that Bryant got Los Angeles going in the first quarter. He moved inside on Deron Williams and went underneath the basket to get loose, then put his hand out and laid the ball in for two points.

What's more, the Lakers were trailing by two later in the quarter when Smush Parker tried to feed Bryant. Ronnie Brewer picked off the pass, ran the length of the court and slammed the ball in to put Utah Jazz up 21-17.

Los Angeles Lakers were back up two in the second quarter when the Jazz showed how they moved to the top of the standings. They got rebound after rebound before Matt Harpring finally found Carlos Boozer who slammed it down to tie things at 36.

And Utah just could not keep control. Parker stole the ball from Andrei Kirilenko, took it down court and underhanded it to Bryant, who went in at Kirilenko and sank an up and under lay up off of the glass to give his team a 10 point lead.

We must remember that time was ticking down in the quarter when Luke Walton handed Bryant the ball. Bryant ran downcourt, called for a pick and when he got it he went hard to the basket, dunking through Boozer and Andrei Kirilenko.

And that was not it. Bryant scored 12 second-quarter points and was just getting started.

He got things going in the second half. Los Angeles moved the ball around until Lamar Odom found Bryant in the paint. He again went to the rim and emphatically slammed the ball down.

Bryant kept putting on a show for the hometown fans. He put on a dribbling exhibition before hitting a jump shot over Kirilenko to make it 69-56 Lakers.

Bryant didn't even bother putting the rubber ball on the floor three minutes later when he simply pulled up and hit a three pointer, giving Los Angeles a 19 point lead.

Bryant hit the last of his 30 points in the third quarter with just over a minute left. He made room between himself and Gordan Giricek before pulling up and smoothly sinking the long jumper.

Finally, Kobe Bryant made all nine of his shots in the third quarter to set a Lakers record that he had set last season. He finished with 52 as Los Angeles ran all over the Utah Jazz 132-102.

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