During Game 2 of the 2009 NBA Finals, Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol showed their incredible chemistry during the dying minutes of overtime and ended up scoring the clutch basket to give the Los Angeles Lakers a 2-0 series lead over the Orlando Magic.
After handing the Utah Jazz a gentleman’s sweep in the first round of the playoffs, a close 4-3 series win over Yao Ming’s Houston Rockets in the second round, and eliminating Denver Nuggets 4-2 in the Western Conference Finals, Kobe Bryant and co. were all set to face a determined and motivated Orlando Magic team led by the 23-year-old Dwight Howard.
The Lakers managed to blowout the Magic 100-75 to win Game 1 at the Staples Center. After suffering an embarrassing 25-point loss in their first finals appearance in 14 years, Orlando bounced back and how. On 7th June 2009, the two finalists faced each other for Game 2 of their finals series and this time, the match was so well-fought that scores were all tied up at 88-apiece entering OT.
Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol clicked at the right time and helped the Los Angeles Lakers score the winning points against Orlando Magic
Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol had a pretty solid performance in the regulation. However, during the dying minutes of OT, they managed to show their incredible chemistry and ended up converting the much needed, game-winning basket for LAL.
With about 1:20 minutes on the clock and the Lakers having a slender 91-94 lead, Kobe Bryant came off a screen set by Gasol and dished him with the perfect pass to score the open layup, and even got fouled.
When asked about that crucial play, the Mamba explained:
“We’re always talking to each other, always, things that we see and defenses their whole defense is cocked towards me and Pau, so we’re in constant dialogue that we can see, adjustments that we can make on the fly, and we’ve been kind of trying to time that up the right way the whole game. It just didn’t work out for us, and at the right time it did.”
“We just put Dwight in a situation where he had to make a choice, simple as that. Pau and I timed it perfectly with him being parallel to myself and him having the right angle to get it to him just in case Dwight committed. He committed, and I got Pau an easy bucket, and one.”
Looking back, this play in Game 2 might’ve been the most important play in those ’09 Finals. The Lakers not only won that match 101-96 but also went on to win the 2009 Championship after dominating Orlando 4-1 in that series.