Jan 19 2009: Kobe and LeBron guard each other and hit shots for the ages on Martin Luther King Day 2009. Kobe injured what was already a dislocated ring finger on his shooting hand while guarding LeBron with 10:30 left in the 1st quarter. The Lakers entered the game 31-8, the Cavs 31-7. The Lakers entered this season more determined than ever after making it to the Finals and losing to the Celtics. Kobe Bryant was the reigning league MVP. The Cavs had made it to the Finals and lost to the Spurs the year before that. They would finish the 2009 season with the two best records in the league, the Cavs at 66-16 and the Lakers at 65-17. LeBron would win the first of his 4 MVP's this season. He and Kobe would be named to the All-NBA 1st Team and All-NBA Defensive 1st Team. It was a time when talk had begun as to who the best player in the world was. Was it still Kobe Bryant, or had the ascendant LeBron James surpassed him? LeBron always brought his A-game whenever playing against Kobe in LA. In fact, I don't know what the numbers would say, but I don't think LeBron has ever played as well against a team as he used to whenever he played the Lakers. We can also see Kobe's inventiveness going up against the larger LeBron, who should himself be commended for even attempting to guard Kobe, the quicker, lighter player. Kobe was in his 13th season, LeBron in his 6th. LA won 105-88 and handed Cleveland their biggest loss of the season up to that point.
Kobe: 20pts (9-22) 6reb 12ast 1stl 1blk
LeBron: 23pts (9-25) 9reb 4ast 4stl 1blk
: "This Old Heart of Mine" by The Isley Brothers was released in January 1966 during the height of the civil rights movement. Most of the best music ever made came from this period.