Phil, Kobe and the gang tried to pull the usual jedi mind tricks surrounding Kobe’s ankle. Yeah, he “limped around” and didn’t score in the first. Nevertheless, you’d be hard pressed to believe Bryant would remain quiet as New Orleans had a healthy lead heading into the second quarter.
The boiling point commenced when Bryant got peeved at Ariza’s continuation bucket after Kobe fouled him. Therefore, it’s plain to see Bean took his anger out on the rim on the ensuing possession. Then heads got gassed over the sudden extra bounce to his step. Let’s keep it funky; his ankle was fine all along. Besides, no one dunks on somebody’s head that hard on a tender joint. The sledgehammer shifted momentum in LA’s favor for the rest of the game.
Then Kobe let the Hornets know anybody could get it in the third. Witness how he weaved by Trevor Ariza and Carl Landry for another poster. You gotta love Monty Williams’ “I saw it…but I won’t believe it” reaction after the jam. The Lake Show went on to win 106-90 and hold a critical 3-2 series lead.
Things could have been worse for New Orleans on second thought. I mean it’s not like the plays set the city back as far as The New Orleans Booty. You better believe the squad is plotting their revenge for Thursday’s game 6 matchup in the Big Easy.
Previously: PoV: Kobe Dunks