Jan-22, 2006: Kobe Scores 81

On Jan. 22, 2006 against the Toronto Raptors, Kobe Bryant recorded the second-highest scoring game in NBA history with 81 points, second only to Wilt Chamberlain’s 100-point effort more than 40 years earlier.

The Lakers were down at halftime 63-49 to the lowly Raptors (14-27) and facing their third straight loss.  Then Kobe took over the game.  He outscored the Raptors himself in the second half 55-41.  That would be sufficient to tie the game, but his teammates pitched 18 points for the margin of victory.

FGA FG 3PTA 3PT FTA FT Pts
Q1  10  5  1 0-  4  4  14
Q2  8  5  1  1  2  1  12
HALF  18  10  1  1  6  5  26
Q3  15  11  5  4  1  1  26
Q4  13  7  6  2  13  12  28
2nd HALF  28  18  11  6  14  13  55
GAME  46  28  13  7  20  18  81

That year, Bryant averaged a career-best 35.4 points, to go along with 5.3 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 1.8 steals on 45.0 percent field goals.  He still finished 4th in MVP voting behind Steve Nash, LeBron James and Dirk Nowitzski.

Only 5 players have scored 70 or more in an NBA game – Kobe, Elgin Baylor, David Thompson, David Robinson and Wilt Chamberlain (who did so 6 times).

Top 10 Performances

  1. Wilt Chamberlain (100)
    March 2, 1962
    Philadelphia Warriors 169, New York Knicks 147
  2. Kobe Bryant (81)
    January 22, 2006
    Los Angeles Lakers 122, Toronto Raptors 104
  3. Wilt Chamberlain (78)
    December 8, 1961
    Philadelphia Warriors 147, Los Angeles Lakers 151
  4. Wilt Chamberlain (73)
    January 13, 1962
    Philadelphia Warriors 135, Chicago Packers 117
  5. Wilt Chamberlain (73)
    November 16, 1962
    San Francisco Warriors 127, Chicago Packers 111
  6. David Thompson (73)
    April 9, 1978
    Denver Nuggets 137, Detroit Pistons 139
  7. Wilt Chamberlain (72)
    November 3, 1962
    San Francisco Warriors 115, Los Angeles Lakers 127
  8. Elgin Baylor (71)
    November 15, 1960
    Los Angeles Lakers 123, New York Knicks 108
  9. David Robinson (71)
    April 24, 1994
    San Antonio Spurs 112, Los Angeles Clippers 97
  10. Wilt Chamberlain (70)
    March 10, 1963
    San Francisco Warriors 148, Syracuse Nationals 163
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