LOS ANGELES, Jan. 7 (Ticker) -- For 18 1/2 minutes, Kobe Bryant was having an ordinary game. For the next 22 1/2 minutes, he shot his way into history.

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Bryant scored 45 points and set NBA records with nine consecutive 3-pointers and 12 overall as the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Seattle SuperSonics, 119-98, for their fourth win in five games.

"It wasn't like the basket was so huge, but it just felt like my rhythm was great," Bryant said. "I just felt an incredible rhythm. And the calmness, it wasn't like I was rushing or anything like that, it just felt really calm and just felt like I shoot it, I am going to make it."

It was the most points scored by the Lakers this season, who are in the midst of their best five-game stretch of the campaign.

Los Angeles led just 37-32 before Bryant hit his first 3-pointer with 5:28 left in the second quarter. He made his next five shots from the arc to help the Lakers to a 60-45 halftime advantage, then drilled his first three 3-pointers in the third quarter to break the NBA mark for consecutive 3-pointers in one contest.

"The shots he made in the first half and most of the second half were shots that for the most part, our guys were there," Sonics coach Nate McMillan said. "I don't think he had any or maybe a couple uncontested shots. But he was great four feet behind the 3-point line. The guy found his rhythm with his shot and he just felt it."

The record was shared by three players.

"You just look up and all of the sudden you realize that you have six threes at the end of the second quarter, and that really didn't sink in because you are just shooting them one at a time. And the next thing you know, they just start coming and piling up," Bryant said.

"The only way I could stop Kobe from scoring was taking him out at the end of the third quarter," Lakers coach Phil Jackson said. "That was perhaps the greatest streak shooting I think I have ever seen in my life."

With 6:58 left in the contest, Bryant - who never had made more than five 3-pointers in a game - nailed his 12th, giving the Lakers a 101-84 lead and breaking the NBA record for 3-pointers in a game, set on April 18, 1996 by Dennis Scott of the Orlando Magic.

"I've seen (Michael) Jordan and a lot of guys do that, I've seen Chuck Person do that," Sonics guard Gary Payton said. "He was just in a zone, he made shots. He kept firing it up and it kept going in."

Bryant, who exited to a standing ovation - including some on press row - with 4:16 left and the Lakers ahead by 21 points, went 12-of-18 from the arc and 16-of-28 overall.

Paced by Bryant, Los Angeles made a team-record 17 3-pointers on 32 attempts (53 percent) and shot 56 percent (43-of-77) overall. The Lakers were a combined 7-of-38 from the arc in a weekend home-and-home series with Phoenix.

Shaquille O'Neal added 20 points, Derek Fisher had 13 and Rick Fox 10 for Los Angeles, which took the lead for good, 11-10, on a jumper by Samaki Walker with 6:25 left in the first quarter.

Desmond Mason contributed 19 points, Kenny Anderson 17 and Payton 14 and 12 assists for Seattle, which has lost six of eight games.

"We didn't have intensity and we couldn't make shots, so things just went their way," Payton said. "(Kobe) was shooting three, four feet from behind the three and he was making it. He was in a rhythm. It was just one of those nights that he had."

The Sonics made only 3-of-8 3-point attempts but shot 48 percent overall (40-of-83).

"The Sonics played well," Jackson said. "Without Kobe shooting, it would have been a much different type of game."