OAKLAND, Calif. --The big night has arrived. Golden State going for 73 wins, and Kobe Bryant going into retirement.
The 170th and final day of this NBA regular season will be loaded with intrigue, maybe an unprecedented amount. Golden State plays host to Memphis later Wednesday night, and a win would give the Warriors outright possession of the best record in league history.
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Golden State takes a 72-9 record into the finale. At worst, the Warriors will match Chicago's record of 72-10 set in the 1995-96 season.
Meanwhile, Bryant's final game of his 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers is also generating an enormous about of attention. Bryant's finale comes when the Lakers play host to the Utah Jazz later Wednesday, and the five-time NBA champion will retire as the league's No. 3 all-time scorer behind only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Karl Malone.
Hours before tipoff, the Bryant tributes were already pouring in on social media.
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"Man I'm still in disbelief that this Kobe last game," longtime NBA guard Mario Chalmers wrote on Twitter early Wednesday. "It always seem like the greats should play forever. I wanna thank Kobe for everything he did for the game and the players after him. One of the greatest ever to do it."
Tickets for either game were still commanding huge prices through secondary outlets Wednesday, with good seats at Oracle Arena or Staples Center easily exceeding $1,000 - much more in many cases.
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