Wednesday night, Kobe Bryant scored 29 points to secure a win over the New Orleans Hornets and, in the process, became the youngest player ever to reach a total of 30,000 career points.
Going into the game, Bryant only needed to score 13 points to put himself over the 30,000 career points mark. With only 1:17 left in the first half, Bryant scored over center Robin Lopez to hit the mark — and even put himself over it.
Bryant is now one of only four other players to have reached 30,000 career points, and he’s the youngest of them all at 34. Other players to reach the milestone include Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Karl Malone, Michael Jordan, and Wilt Chamberlain.
“It’s just a tremendous honor,” Bryant told reporters after the Lakers’ 103-87 win against the Hornets. “I don’t really know how else to put it. I’ve just been very, very fortunate.”
David Stern, the NBA commissioner, was in attendance at Wednesday’s night game between the Lakers and the Hornets in anticipation of Bryant hitting the milestone.
“I want to shake his hand. I think Kobe is, as a talent and a competitor, he’s up there on the pedestal with Michael Jordan as one of the greatest,” Stern told reporters before the game (via ESPN). “Kobe has such an extraordinary run playing at the highest level for so long with the championships to prove it in a league that is extremely competitive.
“Kobe and the Lakers have been an important part of the league, and I wish him well for this season and beyond.”