Kobe Bryant.

Kobe Bryant: The numbers behind an incredible NBA career

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If you didn't know, it's Mamba Day, the final day of Kobe Bryant's illustrious NBA career with the L.A. Lakers. 

The Utah Jazz travel to the Staples Center with their playoff hopes in the balance but whatever the result, the night will be all about the departing legend. 

With the end of the road less than 24 hours away, we break down the numbers that have led to one of the most successful careers in history. 

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Averaging 36.1 minutes per game throughout his career, Bryant ranks sixth in history in terms of time on the hardwood. 

Another L.A. Lakers legend, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is at number one with 57,446. Karl Malone, Kevin Garnett, Jason Kidd and Elvin Hayes are ahead of Kobe.

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What is Kobe if not a prolific scorer? His career points tally ranks third in all-time history behind only Abdul-Jabbar on 38,387 and Karl Malone with 36,928.

It is no surprise really, the Black Mamba attempted the third most field goals in history (26,150), made the sixth most (11,697) and missed more than anybody else (14,453).


Averaging 25.64 points per game through his 220 appearances in the playoffs, Kobe built his reputation as a clutch player when it really mattered.

His points tally in the business end put him third in NBA history behind the G.O.A.T Michael Jordan (5,987) and, once again, Abdul-Jabbar (5,762).


28 of 46 from the field, seven of 13 from behind the arc and 18 of 20 from the free throw line. The incredible shooting statistics on a night when Kobe put the Toronto Raptors to the sword.

January 22, 2006. The date Bryant recorded the second highest individual total in a single game, as the Lakers won 122-104. His tally is second only to Wilt Chamberlain’s 100-point game in 1962. 


The shooting guard was famed for his ability to take over a game. The number of times he changed the landscape of an encounter in the blink of an eye was simply incredible. 

Bryant has recorded 24 career 50-point games, the third most in NBA history behind Wilt Chamberlain (118) and Michael Jordan (31). His last one came against the New York Knicks in 2009.


At 37 years of age, Bryant has had to battle against his own body to continue fighting on throughout the season. At the beginning of February, with a trio of games against the Timberwolves, Pelicans, and Spurs, he made history.

He became the first player of his age or older to score at least 25 points in three straight games since Michael Jordan (40) in 2003.

Los Angeles Lakers v New Orleans Pelicans


The legendary jersey number of the Mamba since he switched from eight at the beginning of the 2006-07 season. 

Since making the switch, he has won two NBA championships, been named the MVP in 2008, the Finals MVP twice and averaged 26.8 points a night. 


If there has been once constant about the Lakers since 1996, it has been Kobe Bryant.

The 37-year-old has spent more seasons with one franchise than any other player in history. John Stockton spent 19 with the Utah Jazz, but Kobe will go down in the history as the player to stay with a franchise the longest.


Since 1998, Kobe has been selected to every single All-Star game. The 1999 showpiece event was cancelled due to a lockout. It only proved to diminish Bryant's record. 

He holds the title for the most consecutive All-Star game selections and is second in terms of overall selections, behind Abdul-Jabbar on 19.

NBA All-Star Game 2016


Christmas Day is a huge part of the NBA calendar and Kobe has been involved more times than anybody else. He made his first appearances in his rookie season, playing five minutes and scoring a single point against the Sixers. 

His best performance came in 2007 as he dropped 38 points off 60 percent shooting from the field to help see off the Phoenix Suns. The final festive appearance came last Christmas in a loss to the Clippers.


Not only does Kobe Bryant hold the record most consecutive selections in All-Star game history, he also has the most starts in the showpiece event.

Since his first start as a teenager in 1998, he has appeared in 14 more starting line-ups, including the 2016 game in Toronto where he topped voting ahead of MVP Stephen Curry. 


Fresh out of Lower Merion high school, Bryant was seen by some as a risk in the 1996 NBA Draft, while others, well they saw the potential of the teenager. 

The 13th pick changed the landscape of the league as he was selected by the Charlotte Hornets before being traded to the L.A. Lakers. 


Throughout his glistening career, Kobe has been selected to the All-NBA First Team more times than anyone else, except for Karl Malone, with the duo being chosen 11 times each.

His first selection came in 2002 while his latest honour was at the end of the 2012/13 campaign.


For all of his attacking qualities, Bryant is a monster on the defensive end. He was named to the NBA All-Defensive First Team for the first time in 2000.

The guard is tied with Kevin Garnett, Michael Jordan and Gary Payton for the most in NBA history and was last chosen in 2011. He has never won Defensive Player of the Year.


Rings. The things that will mark Kobe's greatness. Tied with Tim Duncan, he has claimed five during his career. 

From the unstoppable three-peat with Shaquille O'Neal to the back-to-back successes with Pau Gasol, NBA champions have defined the Mamba as a competitor.

Los Angeles Lakers Media Day


The All-Star game is a time for players to enjoy themselves and show off their talents. Boy, did Kobe do that. He was named MVP on four separate occasions - 2002, 2007, 2009, 2011.

He is tied with Bob Pettit for the most in NBA history.


The three-peat of 2000-2002 shaw O'Neal complete a hattrick of Finals MVP awards. 

But there was no stopping Bryant in 2009 and 2010 as he proved he could do it without one half of the most dominant duo in NBA history. The Orlando Magic and Boston Celtics stood no chance.

NBA Finals Game 5:  Los Angeles Lakers v Orlando Magic


Last but certainly not least. 2008 saw Bryant finally get his hands on an award that had eluded him. 

With statistics of 28.3 points, 5.4 assists, and 6.3 rebounds, he claimed the Kia NBA Most Valuable Player Award. It's just a wonder he only won the accolade once. 

Kobe Bryant
LA Lakers
Pacific Division
Western Conference

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