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Duke basketball figures react to Kobe Bryant's final game

<p>Kobe Bryant scored 60 points in the final game of his career Wednesday, earning praise from Blue Devil players and coaches across the basketball world on Twitter</p>

Kobe Bryant scored 60 points in the final game of his career Wednesday, earning praise from Blue Devil players and coaches across the basketball world on Twitter

The end of an era in professional basketball arrived Wednesday night, but Kobe Bryant had no intentions of going out quietly.

Bryant scored 60 points on 22-of-50 shooting Wednesday in the last game of his storied NBA career, single-handedly willing the Lakers to a 101-96 victory against the Utah Jazz at the Staples Center. The 20-year veteran scored 17 straight Los Angeles points in the fourth quarter to overcome a 10-point deficit, ending the night with the sixth 60-plus point game of his career.

Former Blue Devil Ryan Kelly replaced Bryant in the game's final seconds so that the shooting guard could receive one final standing ovation as he left the court for the final time in a game.

READ: The Chronicle spoke to Kelly in February about his front-row seat to Bryant's farewell tour

A couple of former Blue Devils—Utah head coach Quin Snyder and Jazz swingman Rodney Hood—were on the receiving end of Bryant's emphatic farewell, but many other players and coaches affiliated with the Duke program took to Twitter to congratulate Bryant on his big night—and the end of his career.

Bryant played on two of Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski's Olympic gold-medal USA Basketball teams and attended the Blue Devils' Sweet 16 loss March 24 in Anaheim, Calif., a short drive from Los Angeles. The Blue Devils have also received custom Nike Kobe sneakers in the past.

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