On Sunday, Los Angeles Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant will play in his final NBA All-Star Game with the 37-year-old intent on retiring at the end of the 2015-16 season. Bryant has quite a few All-Star Game records to his credit with his All-Star Game MVP total being arguably the most impressive.
Bryant has won the NBA All-Star Game MVP award a record four times which is one better than Michael Jordan and ties Bob Pettit. Bryant will have one more chance to make it five MVP awards, but has admitted he’d be happy with playing 10 minutes.
Former Lakers teammate Shaquille O’Neal believes Kobe will be aiming for that fifth MVP award if he gets hot early in the game via Turner Sports PR:
#Shaq analyzes former teammate @kobebryant's chances of having a big game on Sunday #NBAAllStarTO pic.twitter.com/6OcSkEUYFi
— TurnerSportsPR (@TurnerSportsPR) February 12, 2016
Back in 2009, Bryant and O’Neal shared the All-Star Game MVP award. The two superstars dominated the game with both more than deserving of the honor as they combined for 44 points leading the Western Conference All-Stars to 27-point victory over the Eastern Conference.
Two years later, Kobe won the All-Star Game MVP a fourth time with the game being played on his home floor of the Staples Center in Los Angeles. The West came away with a five-point win over the East with Bryant scoring 37 points and 14 rebounds.
Although going for a fifth All-Star Game MVP may be in the back of his mind, Bryant admitted before heading into All-Star weekend that he’s hurting all over his body. Kobe may be looking at this final trip to the All-Star Game as a perfect opportunity to recover for the final 27 games of his playing career with the Lakers.