Nov. 25, 2001
23 years, 94 days
When the game was on the line, the Lakers knew to turn to one of the most dominant combinations in NBA history.
Former Laker Nick Van Exel (34 points) had put a scare into the purple and gold, as Denver led by three midway through the fourth quarter. But then Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal checked back in, and L.A. finished on an 18-8 run for a 105-98 win.
The victory — L.A.’s fifth straight — propelled the defending champs to a 12-1 start, and couldn’t have been accomplished without both of their stars.
Bryant led the Lakers in scoring (25), rebounds (seven) and assists (seven), while providing offense when needed most. He tallied 10 points in the first quarter and scored L.A.’s last five of the game.
Meanwhile, O’Neal added 22 points and six blocks, as the Lakers shot 52.6 percent from the field (41-of-78).
Kobe performances on this day in history: