There are two parts to defending Kobe Bryant right now. First, don’t bring the double because he’s carving teams up with his passing. Second, you need to be physical with him and not let him get to his comfort zones on the court. Teams that have done that this season have had success against Kobe in game winner or game tying shots situations.
Solomon Hill and the Pacers didn’t do the second part of that with the game on the line Sunday night. Kobe got Hill off balance coming off a pick, got to the elbow area, stepped back then spun into the middle and got right into the middle of the paint. Roy Hibbert didn’t come over and help, staying attached to Carlos Boozer.
So Kobe hit a jump hook that gave the Lakers the win 88-87 win.
The Pacers had 12 seconds to try to get a good shot and the win, but the set they ran shows everything you need to know about their difficulty creating shots without Paul George.
Los Angeles came back from 13 down in the third quarter to pick up the win at home. Bryant finished with 20 points and 6 assists, while Nick Young had 22 to lead LA.