MINNEAPOLIS - All these years, Kobe Bryant has been chasing Michael Jordan. Nikita Kucherov Jersey .The bar doesnt get any higher than that. And after Bryant passed Jordan for third on the NBAs career scoring list in the Los Angeles Lakers 100-94 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Sunday night, he offered a glimpse into the relentless mentality it takes to run down a legend.I think the competitive nature is something that frightens a lot of people when you peel back truly whats inside of a person to compete and be at that high level, Bryant said. It scares a lot of people that are just comfortable being average.Bryant has been compared to Jordan for a long time, in part because he dared to chase him. Where Bryant is every bit Jordans equal is in the tenacity that has kept him going through a torn Achilles tendon, bone-on-bone friction in his knees and now the painful rebuilding of a proud franchise.His competitiveness drives him in the off-season to work to be able to play at the level he plays, Timberwolves coach Flip Saunders said. His competitiveness during the games to dominate offensively and defensively and then his competitiveness of wanting to win. Hell challenge teammates if need be and will do whatever it takes to try to get that edge.Its the only way Bryant knows. And he learned by studying the best.I think when you look at Michaels (Hall of Fame) speech, Bryant said, referring to a speech in which Jordan cited those who he perceived to have gotten in his way over the years. People really got a chance to see how he ticks and it scared a lot of people, right? But thats just the reality of it. You cant get to a supreme level without channeling the dark side a little bit.Bryants willingness to embrace the darkness has, in his own eyes, cast him as one of the leagues villains. It also likely ensures that his farewell tour, whenever that comes, will not be of the warm and fuzzy variety that New York Yankees star Derek Jeter enjoyed last season.Derek and I are different people, Bryant said. He hides it a lot better but I guarantee you our competitive spirit is exactly the same. He just hides it better or chooses to hide it. I dont choose to hide it.Then again, maybe he overestimates the animosity out there. Maybe thats another mind trick that he plays on himself to get him out of bed in the morning and to the gym for another workout.When No. 24 stepped to the free-throw line midway through the second quarter on Sunday night — with 5:24 remaining and 24 seconds on the shot clock, to be exact — needing both shots to move past Jordan, a Lakers-heavy crowd at Target Center stood and serenaded him. Cell phone flashes flickered as the first and second shots swished through and the Timberwolves stopped the game, with owner Glen Taylor presenting Bryant the game ball to a thunderous ovation.Im used to being the villain, man, Bryant said with a sheepish smile. To have moments like that, when youre not expecting a hug and you get a hug, this feels pretty damn good.Once it was finally over, the weight lifted and Bryant found another gear against a young Timberwolves team that includes 19-year-olds Andrew Wiggins — the No. 1 overall pick in the June draft — and Zach LaVine, who wears No. 8 in honour of Bryant.He finished the night with 26 points, including a dagger of a 3-pointer over Wiggins outstretched hand with just over a minute to play that helped seal the win.I witnessed greatness tonight, a star-struck Wiggins said. A living legend passed Michael Jordan, who everyone thinks is the best player of all-time. Thats a big accomplishment. Im glad I was there to witness it.Wiggins was 1 when a wide-eyed Bryant entered the league in 1996, and that wasnt lost on him in the afterglow on Sunday night.It was a strange feeling, Bryant said. I remember being Andrew Wiggins. I remember playing against Michael my first year. To be here tonight and playing against him and seeing the baby face and the little footwork and little technique things that hes going to be much, much sharper at as time goes on. It was like looking at a reflection of myself 19 years ago. It was pretty cool.Now that Bryant has bumped Jordan from the scoring podium, only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38,387) and Karl Malone (36,928) are in front of him.Even if he remains in third place, which appears likely, it wont really matter. Vaulting over Jordan, whose Jumpman logo is as synonymous with the NBA as Jerry Wests silhouette, is its own reward.Maybe thats why the insatiable Bryant wore the unfamiliar smile of satisfaction on Sunday night. Hes been trying for almost two decades. And now he can finally say hes beaten Jordan at something.It has a certain finality to it, he said. When moments like this come around, youre really overjoyed by it. At the same time, you know the end is pretty near, which is fine, too. Braydon Coburn Jersey . -- Steven Stamkos scored his first goal since returning from a major injury, Ryan Callahan had his first goal with Tampa Bay, and the Lightning beat the Florida Panthers 5-4 on Thursday night. Vincent Lecavalier Jersey .com) - The Columbus Blue Jackets rewarded starting goaltender and pending restricted free agent Sergei Bobrovsky with a four-year contract extension on Friday. http://www.lightninghockeystore.us/Ryan-Callahan-Jersey/ .C. -- Charles Oakley, one of the NBAs all-time tough guys, may not return to the Charlotte Bobcats bench next season because of a painful back condition he says was caused during an assault last year in Las Vegas.PHOENIX -- Josh Collmenter was locked in, throwing strikes, watching his teammates make spectacular plays and turn double plays. As the game wore on, he started to notice that the same hitters kept coming up every three innings. Not quite perfect, but not that far off. Turning in the most dominant start of his career, Collmenter joined Randy Johnson as the only Arizona pitchers to face the minimum in a nine-inning game, tossing a three-hitter in the Diamondbacks 4-0 win over the light-hitting Cincinnati Reds Thursday night. "In the eighth I looked up just to see and at that point youre kind of cognizant of what you have to do," Collmenter said. "You get those guys, then you set yourself up for seven, eight and the pinch hitter." Collmenter got those final three hitters and plenty of help from his teammates. Aaron Hill, who went 1 for 10 in a three-game series against San Diego, had three hits, including a solo homer in the sixth inning off Tony Cingrani (2-5). A.J. Pollock had a double, a triple and scored two runs from the leadoff spot, and Martin Prado added a late run-scoring single. The defence was stellar, making a handful of spectacular players and erasing the runners who did reach base. Collmenter (4-2) was sharp from the first pitch, breezing through his first career complete game by mixing speeds and hitting both sides of the plate. He didnt quite match Johnson, who had a perfect game in 2004 against Atlanta, but faced the same number of hitters. Collmenter also becomes the 13th player since 1914 to allow three or more hits and face the minimum 27 batters in a nine-inning game. "He was just kind of in the zone, throwing his pitches right where he wanted them," said Arizona manager Kirk Gibson, whose team has won five of seven. The Reds have had trouble converting with runners in scoring position this season. They had one against the Diamondbacks, Brayan Pena in the third inning, and he was thrown out at third after tagging up on a flyball to centre. Cincinnati has lost five of six after being shut out for the sixth time this season. "We didnt barrel many balls," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "In part credit to him and in part a testament to the fact that we havent been swinging the bats very well. Brett Howden Jersey. " Collmenter has been on a roll over the past month, going 3-0 with a 3.60 ERA in six starts. The over-the-top-throwing right-hander kept it going against the Reds, with help from his defence. The Diamondbacks turned three double plays behind him, including a catch-and-throw by Pollock in centre to get Pena at third in the second inning. Hill also had a diving stop up the middle to rob Todd Frazier of a hit in the seventh inning and made a tough stop on a grounder by Pena in the ninth. Collmenter struck out five and walked none to win his third straight start and fourth straight decision. "He made quality strikes and got bad contact," Diamondbacks catcher Tuffy Gosewisch said. "They hit a few balls hard and we played great defence and turned a double play here and there." The Reds ended a four-game losing streak on Wednesday, when Homer Bailey outpitched two-time Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw in a 3-2 victory over the Dodgers. Cingrani wasnt quite as good, though managed to limit the damage. The left-hander had struggled a bit since coming off the disabled list (shoulder), allowing four runs in each of his past two starts. Arizona scored a run off Cingrani in the first inning, when Pollock led off with a double, stole third and scored when catcher Devin Mesoracos throw bounced into left field for an error. Hill hit a solo homer to left in the fourth inning, his fifth of the season, and chased Cingrani with a run-scoring single up the middle in the sixth. Cingrani allowed three runs on seven hits in five innings. "I was just trying to get my rhythm going and build off each outing and try to find my groove," Cingrani said. "I will hit it sooner or later." Collmenter certainly has. NOTES: Diamondbacks C Miguel Montero, who leads the majors with 48 games caught, was given the night off. ... The error by Mesoraco in the first inning was the 24th by the Reds, still fewest in the majors. ... Arizona RHP Bronson Arroyo, Fridays starter against the Reds, played the previous eight seasons in Cincinnati. He is 3-1 with a 1.90 ERA his last six starts. RHP Mike Leake will start for Cincinnati after allowing two runs in six innings of a 2-0 loss to St. Louis his last start. Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys ' ' '