TDIKH: December 27

Dec. 27, 1999

21 years, 126 days

A battle of future Hall of Fame big men went down between Shaquille O’Neal and Dirk Nowitzki, but Kobe Bryant provided the deciding factor.

Dallas hit seven 3-pointers in the fourth quarter alone, including one to tie with 21.4 seconds left. But then Bryant drew a foul with 8.6 seconds to go and knocked down both free throws to cap Los Angeles’ 108-106 win.

“Kobe went off a little bit on his own,” head coach Phil Jackson told reporters. “We had something else designed, but he felt that he had a good opportunity an that’s fine. He felt comfortable with it.”

While O’Neal (35 points, 14 rebounds) and Nowitzki (30 points, five 3-pointers) collided, Bryant held his own with 25 points (10-of-22), nine rebounds and three steals.

The Lakers took a 12-point lead after the first quarter, but Dallas hit 10 3’s to hang around until the end. Nonetheless, L.A. shot 48.9 percent to win its ninth straight game and 19th consecutive victory over Dallas.

Kobe performances on this day in history: