When Kobe Bryant had a bad day: Remembering the five poorest shooting performances by the legend
After an illustrious 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers, Kobe Bryant is now widely considered as one of the best NBA players of all-time. Bryant sits third on the league's all-time regular-season scoring list and also led the league in scoring in both 2006 and 2007. The Philadelphia native also captured five titles with the Lakers and took home the MVP award back in 2008.
Bryant was also renowned for his ability to put up huge scoring numbers, and the 81 points he recorded against the Toronto Raptors was the second-most points scored in a single game in league history. Nevertheless, despite being incredibly consistent, Bryant occasionally endured a rare bad game, and here we will look at the worst shooting performances of his legendary career.
#5 Lakers vs Boston Celtics - April 5th, 2002
The rivalry between the Lakers and Boston Celtics is well-documented, and Bryant enjoyed plenty of excellent performances against his rivals during his lengthy career. However, back in April 2002, he endured one of the worst shooting nights of his career as he shot just 5-25 from the field during a comprehensive loss.
Bryant managed to finish with 25 points thanks to his accuracy at the free-throw line, but couldn't find any rhythm from the field as he knocked down just 20% of his attempts. Bryant's struggles from the field confirmed just how much the Lakers still relied on the sidelined Shaquille O'Neal - and it wouldn't be until two seasons later that Kobe established himself as the Lakers' number one option.
#4 Lakers vs Utah Jazz - May 11, 2008
The Lakers entered this Western Conference semifinal matchup with a 2-1 series lead over the Utah Jazz, although Bryant reverted to the worst version of himself as he shot his team out of the contest. Bryant finished with 33 points but connected with just 13 of his 33 field-goal attempts as the Jazz leveled the series.
Instead of looking for the inform Lamar Odam, Bryant often went to his three-point shot - but was only able to knock down one of his ten attempts from deep. Bryant also struggled from the line (60%) and saw two of shots blocked as the Jazz won in overtime.