It took until the 8:50 mark of the second quarter for Kobe Bryant to score his first points on Saturday, as he missed his first five shots and first free-throw attempt before hitting a pair of freebies against the hapless Sacramento Kings. As is usually the case with scorers, though, seeing those shots go through the net worked wonders for Bryant. A possession later, Kobe (working the entire first half through a painful bone spur in his left foot) called off a Pau Gasol screen to take John Salmons off the dribble for the score. On the touch after that, Bryant crossed Salmons over to nail the pull-up jumper at the free-throw line, a perfect encapsulation of a far more efficient 2012-13 season (free throws, drives, short jumpers) that has turned Kobe Bryant into an offensive marvel even at the age of 34.
Also, on the last shot he passed the legendary Wilt Chamberlain to become the NBA’s fourth all-time leading scorer. With that jumper, he scored points number 31,420 and 31,421 in a brilliant career.
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