Lakers News: NBA TV Celebrating Kobe Bryant’s 40th Birthday With Marathon
Andrew D. Bernstein-NBAE

With Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant celebrating his 40th birthday on Thursday, it’s serving as an opportunity to reflect on his storied 20-year career.

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There certainly isn’t a shortage of highlights, as Bryant dazzled and mystified during times he was key to the Lakers winning five championships and while attempting to prove he was capable of succeeding outside of Shaquille O’Neal’s shadow.

NBA TV has scheduled a marathon to honor and recognize some of Bryant’s most memorable performances. The network selected programming that includes regular season and playoff games, as well as Bryant’s participation in an All-Star Game and more.

NBA TV also selected unique interviews Bryant did with Ahmad Rashad and O’Neal, which offered insight into his mindset.

Listed below are details and a complete breakdown of NBA TV’s schedule for Thursday, with the marathon tipping off at 3 a.m. Pacific Time.

3 a.m. — Kobe Bryant wins the 1997 Slam Dunk Contest in Cleveland as a rookie (Re-airs at 9:30 a.m.)

3:30 a.m. — Kobe Bryant scores 33 points against Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls

5:30 a.m. — Kobe Bryant scores 18 points in the 1998 NBA All-Star Game, the first of his career. Bryant became the youngest player to start in the All-Star Game

7:30 a.m. — Kobe Bryant steps up after Shaquille O’Neal fouls out to lead the Lakers to a win over the Indiana Pacers in Game 4 of the 2000 NBA Finals

10 a.m. — Kobe Bryant leads the Lakers 48 points and 16 rebounds to complete a sweep of the Sacramento Kings in the 2001 Western Conference Semifinals

12 p.m. — Kobe Bryant scores a career-best 81 points to lead the Lakers to a comeback win against the Toronto Raptors

2 p.m. — Kobe Bryant scores 32 points against the Orlando Magic in an overtime victory in Game 4 of the 2009 NBA Finals

4 p.m. — 1-on-1 interview with Ahmad Rashad from 2015 (Re-airs at 9 p.m.)

5 p.m. — Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal discuss their successes, struggles and growth as teammates and during retirement (Re-airs at 10 p.m.)

6 p.m. — Kobe Bryant scores 60 points against the Utah Jazz in a fitting performance for the final game of his career.

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