BFFs LeBron James and Kobe Bryant faced off in one of the few remaining games they’ll play against each other — at least in meaningful games as professionals. And, in case you hadn’t heard, this season has been nothing short of a disappointment for both all-time greats. On one side, there’s LeBron and his Cavaliers, floating listlessly in the sea of NBA mediocrity, while rumors of inner turmoil swirl about. Yet, thanks to playing in the Eastern Conference, they hold one advantage over their Thursday night opponent (other than overall record): a chance. The Lakers are going nowhere fast, and nobody knows how much longer Kobe has left in the tank, especially for a sinking ship.
Heading into the game, the Lakers were 11-28. They did not improve on that record as LeBron scored a game-high 36 points to lead the Cavs to a 109-102 road win. Kobe wasn’t too shabby himself, as he dished out a career-high 17 assists. Aside from the numbers, LeBron took advantage of his once-a-year visit to Tinsel Town to laugh it up with his former Olympic teammate. Towards the end of the first half, LeBron went up to snag a lob from Kyrie Irving, only to have the ball clang harmlessly off the rim. Naturally, Kobe relished every moment of LeBron’s mishap, and the two laughed about it as guys with multiple rings and MVPs (combined) should.
But the good vibes didn’t end there. In what turned out to be a relatively close game, LeBron and Kobe found moments to carry on their playful banter, even if, deep down inside, these guys absolutely want to rip each others’ guts out and parade them in front of Jack Nicholson. Here they are at various points during the game…
…and during the final minutes
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