The Boston Celtics played against the Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday afternoon. The game was the first installment of one of the league's most storied rivalries since the tragic passing of Lakers legend Kobe Bryant.
Bryant was a beloved figure for many in the NBA, and that included Celtics rising star Jayson Tatum. Tatum has spoken frequently about his admiration for Bryant, his favorite player, and even had a chance to learn from him as a mentor.
Thus, it's fitting that Tatum reached a milestone that hadn't been reached in a Celtics-Lakers game since Bryant did so in 2011.
According to ESPN Stats & Info, Tatum became the first player to drop 40+ points in a Celtics-Lakers game since Kobe.
That's pretty impressive, especially considering that 41 points tied Tatum's career-high mark. It's also worth noting that Tatum was the team's focal point on offense with Kemba Walker out, and still managed to find success despite being defended by LeBron James and Anthony Davis for portions of the game.
Tatum continues to become a superstar right before our eyes, and this dominant outing is certainly one he should be proud of. Perhaps he and the Celtics young core will continue to play well and spice up a Celtics-Lakers rivalry that had largely been dormant since Bryant's retirement.
Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Celtics-Trail Blazers, which begins Tuesday at 9 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live followed by tip-off at 10 p.m. You can also stream on the MyTeams App.