Kobe Bryant is one of the most accomplished scorers in NBA history but his teammates certainly seemed pleased at his effort on Friday night to share the ball against the Utah Jazz.
Bryant notched 14 assists along with 14 points. He finished one rebound short of a triple-double.
"I tried to make a real concerted effort to force the game upon my teammates a little bit and just have them play with confidence," said Bryant. "Even the shots that are not going in, just try to push it on them a little bit."
The Lakers have been falling apart game-after-game. Their 102-84 win over the Jazz was a step in the right direction.
"Their backs are up against the wall," said Utah Coach Tyrone Corbin. "They were just more aggressive."
Pau Gasol scored 15 points on 7-8 shooting.
"Kobe's being able to share the ball like this tonight, he gets everyone involved," said Gasol. "He is going to get his looks and he's just giving up balance that we need offensively."
Forward Earl Clark noticed Bryant's contribution.
"When he decides he's going to get assists and find other players, it gets us in our rhythm, gets us ready to shoot, and today guys were knocking down shots and it was a great win," said Clark.