Zach LaVine had played in just 10 NBA games before Sunday night’s contest in Los Angeles, and had only scored in double figures twice.
Against the Lakers and their league-worst defense, however, LaVine was able to show out.
A career-high 28 points on 11-of-14 shooting was the result, and LaVine couldn’t have been happier to have this performance take place while Kobe Bryant was on the floor.
“I was playing against my childhood idol,” LaVine said of Bryant, “and I’m really, really surprised he missed that [final] shot. That scared me.”
While LaVine spoke, his teammate Corey Brewer shouted, “He’s the biggest Kobe fan and he beat his a– tonight.”
That last part isn’t exactly true, because it’s not as if Bryant was guarding LaVine for any meaningful stretches. The shot he was referring to was a three from Bryant from straight away that rimmed off the iron as time expired.