10.vs. Oklahoma City, January 27 – 21 points, 14 assists, 9 rebounds
9. vs. Atlanta, March 3 – 34 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals
First, we start with a performance that kicked off the Lakers big run to end the year. At the time, the Lakers sat at 18-25 and no one expected much of them. Their playoff hopes were long written off and it seemed grim they’d even make it to .500. Bryant, as he’s done his whole career, nearly pulling out a triple double and matching a season high in assists. His efforts led the Lakers to a 9-point win, one that sparked their season and the turn-around that got them into the playoffs.
9th best performance by the 17-year veteran goes to his performance against the Hawks, one that saw him posterize Josh Smith. But that wasn’t his lone great play, as his 34/6/4 night led the Lakers to a one-point victory and kept them alive in the playoff race. It would also be a part of 6 wins in 7 games for the Lakers, which wasn’t a coincidence Bryant led them through it all.