Kobe Bryant eclipsed Michael Jordan on the National Basketball Association’s all-time scoring list on Sunday, surpassing the legendary scorer during the second quarter of the Los Angeles Lakers’ game at the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Bryant entered the game needing nine points to top the retired Jordan’s mark of 32,292 points and move into third on the all-time list.
He achieved the mark with a pair of free throws midway through the second quarter, momentarily stopping the game.
The Minnesota crowd rose in appreciation and Bryant received congratulatory hugs from both teams before being presented with the game ball.
“It’s a huge honor. It’s been such a long journey,” Bryant told reporters. “It’s gone by really fast; it feels great to be at this point.”
Bryant finished the night with 26 points to run his scoring total to 32,310 as the Lakers defeated the Timberwolves 100-94.
Jordan, widely thought of as the greatest players of all-time, has long been the standard by which fellow shooting guard Bryant has been measured.
The former great congratulated Bryant’s accomplishment in a statement and has provided the Lakers standout with mentorship over the years.
“I try to learn so much from him in particular. He’s been such a huge part of my success and career in giving me advice,” Bryant said. “The relationship has meant everything to me.”
The 36-year-old Bryant has achieved his scoring in his 19th season and 1,269th game. Jordan’s career lasted 15 seasons and 1,072 games.
Bryant now trails only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38,387 points) and Karl Malone (36,928) in career points.
(Reporting by Jahmal Corner. Editing by Patrick Johnston)