The Stat Line of the Night — 10/27/10 — Kobe Bryant
On the opening night of the NBA, most eyes were on the new trio in Miami, however when they sputtered the defending champion L.A. Lakers made the night a hit. Kobe Bryant, the leader of the team and arguably the best player of this generation were able to squeak out a victory on the night they were honored with their championship rings for winning it all last season. Kobe was his usual workman-like self, scoring, distributing, and playing defense to help his team beat a very good Houston Rockets team 112-110.
Bryant, coming off knee surgery, did not look much the worse for wear. Although his shooting touch started off cold, he finished the night 8 for 20 and hit 11 of his 12 free throws. He had 27 points, but even when his shooting stroke was a little off, he was able to contribute by getting his teammates involved, playing great defense, and even getting some rebounds. He had 7 assists, 5 rebounds, and a steal. He also had some help from his teammates, with Pau Gasol scoring 29 points and snagging 11 rebounds and Steve Blake and Shannon Brown combining for 26 points off the bench.
The Lakers look to be the team to beat in the NBA again this year. Kobe seemed fine after his knee surgery and the bench seems as strong as ever. Bryant will be satisfied with nothing short of a 3rd straight title and 6 overall. Last night he won “The Stat Line of the Night”, but there is no reason to think he can’t take hom another MVP trophy by season’s end.