It's been about a month since Kobe Bryant‘s final NBA game, and while most of the basketball world is focused on the postseason as it continues into its later stages, people are still talking about Bryant dropping a 60 burger to cap off his career.

Include Gordon Hayward in the conversation. The Utah Jazz‘s star player didn't just have a front row seat for Bryant's final hurrah, he logged 32 minutes while failing to contain the Mamba.

A couple days ago, Hayward took to his personal blog to recap the season as a whole for himself and his teammates. In one section, he detailed “the last game.”

Hayward maintained that the Jazz were doing everything in their power to win, but when Kobe started going off late, he admitted that they got caught up in the moment.

Kobe Bryant, Lakers
AP Photo/Jae C. Hong

From Hayward:

We were trying to win, and for a while there we were. But at the end of the game, in the closing minutes, everything that transpired kind of shocked us, to be honest. We were up double digits for most of the second half, and we led by 10 with about three minutes to go. So when Kobe started hitting shots, and the game started to get close, a lot of us were in shock.

Hayward scored 17 points in what certainly wasn't his best game of the season, but it didn't matter all that much; they were eliminated from playoff contention when the Rockets won earlier in the night.

Gordon's primary goal was to stop Bryant, but as he says, it's simply not possible when the Mamba finds his groove.

There comes a point where he is in the zone, and there’s almost nothing you can do. And Kobe kind of got to that, there at the end of the game, where he was hitting everything and the crowd was going wild […] It was definitely a fairy-tale ending for Kobe Bryant and one the sports world will remember forever. Everyone kind of wanted it to be Kobe’s night. Besides us. But that’s how it goes sometimes.

Kobe's career against the Jazz organization includes playoff failures his first two years in the league, but after that, Bryant was a terror for Utah. Their fans are certainly happy that he's gone now, but not before Kobe could give them one last parting gift.

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