TDIKH: December 26

Dec. 26, 2009

31 years, 125 days

When Kobe Bryant lost feeling in his right elbow, it initially took him out of rhythm. After hitting it in the third quarter against Sacramento, he went to the locker room for therapy only to return and miss all four of his fourth-quarter shots.

But as the game went to overtime, he began to shine. In double overtime, he hit clutch back-to-back 3-pointers to push the Lakers to a 112-103 victory.

“My arm went numb and it spazzed up,” Bryant told the media. “My moment came for me to step up. The defense relaxed, (defender Donte Greene) put his hands down and left me open for those shots.”

The Lakers led by six at the 3:35 mark of the fourth quarter, but the offense disappeared form there, as the Kings held them scoreless the rest of the way to send it to extra periods.

L.A.’s slump continued into overtime, as Sacramento scored seven unanswered points to open the frame. But then it was the Kings’ turn to go cold, as Pau Gasol scored five of the Lakers seven countering points to force another overtime period.

From there, Sacramento hardly threatened as it was outscored 11-2 in double overtime and shot just 1-of-8, while Bryant had six points himself on that pair of 3s.

“There’s no way in the world we should have lost that game,” Sacramento rookie Tyreke Evans said. “I just though toward the end things didn’t go our way. But it was also Kobe. He just took over the game with those two 3s.”

Bryant poured in 38 points through the six periods, shooting 16-of-30, while collecting seven rebounds, four assists and four steals. He was at his best in the third, dropping 16 points.

Meanwhile, Gasol complemented Bryant with 24 points (9-of-14), 11 rebounds and six blocks, while Lamar Odom contributed 13 points and 15 rebounds.

Kobe performances on this day in history: