What a night!
On the final evening of the NBA regular season, the league took center stage. The Golden State Warriors chased and eclipsed history with its 73-9 record, and a 37-year-old Kobe Bryant went vintage Mamba on us; dropping 60 points in his final NBA game. Oh, and let’s not forget, the Boston Celtics completed a 26-point comeback over the Miami Heat.
With both highly anticipated games, Memphis Grizzlies vs Golden State Warriors and Utah Jazz vs L.A. Lakers tipping off at 10:30 pm/et, fans were forced to choose between the two. If you stayed in to watch the magic happen, chances are your remote control worked overtime. Or, you could’ve done like me and watched both games at the same damn time courtesy of a local bar. Regardless of how you watched, the important thing was to just watch. What transpired Wednesday night will NEVER happen again. While there’s a chance a team could break Golden State’s record in the future, fans will never have the opportunity to watch a legend like Bryant make history as the oldest player to score 60 points. And those two milestones occurring on the same night? Forget it. Because there’s only one Bryant. The only player capable of such an achievement. In an extraordinary performance, Kobe out Kobe’d himself. He fired up 50 shots as his teammates went out of their way to create shots for the legend. And, he took advantage of each attempt. After starting 0-5, he finished the night 22-50 overall, and dropped the final 15 of his 60 points with 3:46 remaining in the fourth quarter. That is freaking unbelievable, especially after watching Kobe struggle to play a complete season for the first time since 2013. This season, he played a respectable 66 games for an average of 28 minutes. But in his final game ever, Bryant willed his way through to the end for 42 minutes, as only he could. To the delight of NBA fans everywhere, Bryant’s final career game ended with a special, unforgettable finish that even the best Hollywood writers. Well, unless it was the same team of writers who scripted Derek Jeter’s iconic walk-off finish.
And, over in the Bay, fans and experts unanimously predicted the Warriors would break the Chicago Bulls 72-10 record. A beat up Grizzlies team never stood a chance against the fully loaded and focused Warriors. While the 125-104 blowout was business as usual for Golden State, Steph’s shooting spree of 10 three-pointers captivated fans. He finished with 46 points, 6 assists, 4 rebounds, and 2 blocks. One season after Curry set a new NBA record with 286 three-pointers, he beat his own record by 116 for a total of 402 made three-pointers. Unreal.
In all, it was a night to remember. A night the NBA will celebrate for years to come. And a night that us, the fans, were blessed to witness. Here are a few of the best social media moments that you may have missed, but absolutely captured a night to remember.
I might as well kick things off by exploiting the hater in the crew. Ladies and gentelmen, I bring you ex-NBA player Smush Parker’s bitter ass timeline.
Now that that’s out of the way, let’s move on to better things.
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) April 14, 2016
— Carlos Matallín (@matallo) April 14, 2016
I think this is the opposite of the crying Jordan face. pic.twitter.com/wiJLoQkrvA
— Ian Karmel (@IanKarmel) April 14, 2016
Even Snoop is losing his mind pic.twitter.com/zwmLEjwh4o
— The Cauldron (ICYMI) (@CauldronICYMI) April 14, 2016
A photo posted by espn (@espn) on
A video posted by UNINTERRUPTED (@uninterrupted) on
The final shot chart of Kobe Bryant’s NBA career pic.twitter.com/5s0WqZGTxW
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) April 14, 2016
A video posted by NBA on ESPN (@nbaonespn) on
A photo posted by STAPLES Center (@staplescenterla) on
A photo posted by SportsCenter (@sportscenter) on
A video posted by NBA (@nba) on
Tonight was special. #73. We did something thats never been done in the History of the league. Together. So… pic.twitter.com/UuQkVL4RoR
— Stephen Curry (@StephenCurry30) April 14, 2016
A photo posted by NBA (@nba) on
A video posted by SportsCenter (@sportscenter) on
A video posted by Bleacher Report (@bleacherreport) on
If you’re the NBA, how do you top a historic night like Wednesday? With the NBA playoffs. It all begins on Saturday. Will you be watching?