Feb. 8, 1997
18 years, 169 days
The day couldn’t have gone much better for a teenage Kobe Bryant, who set an All-Star Rookie Game record with 31 points before winning the Slam Dunk Contest that night.
Bryant shot 8-of-17 from the field and collected eight rebounds against his fellow rookies, but the West lost by five, thus handing MVP honors to Allen Iverson (19 points, nine assists).
Fortunately for Bryant, he saved his best for a few hours later.
In the opening round of the Dunk Contest, he threw down a reverse jam, which he topped by following with a behind-the-back throwdown — advancing himself to the finals.
His most iconic slam earned him the title as he switched the ball between his legs in mid-air and hammered it home to earn a near-perfect score of 49 out of 50.
Kobe performances on this day in history: