Share “Kobe Bryant leads Lakers past Kings, 103-98”

Kobe Bryant leads Lakers past Kings, 103-98

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 31, 2013 at 12:48 am •  Published: March 31, 2013

"The play wasn't for me. I was supposed to hand it off," Cousins said. "But I got hit in my lower groin and it kind of screwed up the play."

Los Angeles lost Nash with a strained right hamstring just 1:48 into the game. D'Antoni patted Nash on the back before the point guard walked gingerly to the locker room and never returned. Nash is day to day.

Sacramento surged ahead 37-25 after the first quarter with a frenetic pace that often left the Lakers' frontline in the backcourt. The Kings, who entered the game averaging an NBA-best 108.9 points since the All-Star break, made 15 of their first 21 from the floor.

Sacramento held Bryant scoreless until he hit a pair of free throws with 8:50 remaining in the second quarter. The shots sparked Bryant and the Lakers late in the half, along with a larger-than-normal sprinkling of Los Angeles fans sporting purple and gold throughout the announced sellout crowd of 17,317.

Bryant made a pull-up jumper from the free throw line with 7:54 remaining in the second quarter to eclipse Chamberlain's mark of 31,419 points. The only three ahead of him now is Michael Jordan (32,292), Karl Malone (36,928) and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38,387).

Asked if Abdul-Jabbar's record is obtainable for him, Bryant said "I don't see it happening" unless he decides to play longer than planned.

"What a journey," said Bryant, in his 17th season. "It's been a very, very long journey. I'm certainly extremely appreciative of all the support of the Laker faithful, the Laker Nation."

Bryant had a bone spur in his left foot that has bothered him for several games. The injury apparently is unrelated to his sprained left ankle, which occurred earlier in Atlanta, though he said the soreness all sort of blends together.

With his foot stiffening up when he sits, Bryant came out for just 23 seconds.

Bryant finished a thunderous dunk down the lane and added two free throws and a pair of assists, rallying the Lakers back with a 14-1 run to close the third quarter. Los Angeles led 82-75 entering the fourth.

The Kings had scored at least 100 points in 20 of the previous 23 games, including 11 straight at home. With a possible move to Seattle the latest relocation threat for the Kings, Bryant didn't think he had played his last game in Sacramento.

"I predict we'll be back here," Bryant said. "You guys have been saying the same (thing) for three years."

NOTES: Bryant's career high is 15 assists against Washington on Feb. 12, 2002. ... Cousins was called for a technical foul in the second quarter for slamming his hand on the scorer's table after officials whistled teammate Jason Thompson for a foul. ... Kings F James Johnson rejoined the team but sat out his eighth straight game because of personal reasons.