Kobe Bryant as The Masked Mamba [photos]

Kobe Bryant’s protective mask made it’s debut Wednesday night as the Lakers faced off against the Minnesota Timberwolves. The Lakers got their sixth win of their last eight games. Kobe’s play wasn’t impacted, the Masked Mamba had 31 points, eight assists and seven rebounds.

Kobe hadn’t spoken out about the play that vetted him a broken nose but for him, it was just a part of the game. Dwyane Wade is one of his good friends so Kobe isn’t taking the incident personally.

“It was very simple,” Bryant said of the damage from Wade’s foul Sunday. “He didn’t mean to do it. It’s just something that just happens. He’s not that type of person.”

I still think Kobe’s going to be a little more aggressive on Sunday. Not with the intent to physically hurt Wade or anyone on the Heat, but just because…

And of course, there are already photo shop jobs of Masked Mamba.

photos via BSO