MINNEAPOLIS — Kobe Bryant passed Elgin Baylor and moved into 20th place on the NBA’s all-time scoring list during the Lakers’ game against the Minnesota Timberwolves tonight. Bryant dunked to finish a fastbreak in the opening minutes of the second half to push past Baylor, a former Lakers Hall of Famer. Bryant went into the game needed 13 points to tie Baylor with 23,149 points in his career. Baylor began his career with the Lakers in Minneapolis. The player and the team moved to Los Angeles before the 1960-61 season.
Bryant scored 12 points and added five assists and Pau Gasol had 17 points to lead the Lakers to a 54-40 lead by halftime over the surprisingly feisty Timberwolves. Lamar Odom added 10 points and five rebounds during a sluggish first half. Ryan Gomes led Minnesota with 14 points in the first half, and backup Craig Smith added 11. Minnesota was without Al Jefferson, its leading scorer and rebounder. Jefferson is out for the season after undergoing surgery to repair a torn knee ligament.