“I didn’t know if I was going to be able to do that or not, but I figured I would just try it,” Bryant said after throwing down a dunk in the first quarter.
The dunk showed an explosiveness that we weren’t expecting to see for a couple more games after his self-graded “F” performance on Sunday. Bryant’s shooting and decision making was also much improved last night when he hit 6 of 11 shots for 20 points and only turned the ball over 3 times compared to the 8 in his season debut.
Although the Lakers lost again, Bryant seemed much more positive after the game when he gave his performance a “B” grade but did make a statement that seemed to undervalue his teammates.
“It’s not like we were gangbusters before.” said Bryant.
It was a statement that Coach D’Antoni seemed to take a little exception too.
“I have to disagree with that,” said D’Antoni. “We were 6-2 in the last eight and I thought we played extremely well, winning three on the road. … So, that’s not quite right. I’m really proud of what the guys did. We’re back to square one in figuring out the best combinations with Kobe in the lineup, how that works and who plays off of who better. It will take a few games to sort that out, but in the meantime we need to win and we need to play hard, and if we do that, it will take care of itself.”
In the meantime, let’s check out the highlights of the game.
Suns 114 – Lakers 108
Kobe Byrant: 20 points, 2 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 block, 3 turnovers (6-11 fg, 7-8 ft)
THE POST GAME INTERVIEW