Lakers 77, Nuggets 64 (end of third quarter)
Anyone expectiung the Lakers to take their 10-point halftime lead and sit on it would have been wrong. They came out in the third quarter and played championship-caliber basketball.
Andrew Bynum picked up his sixth and seventh blocks to go with 12 rebounds. Kobe Bryant started to find his range, scoring 17 points for the game. And Ramon Sessions proved to be the smart pickup with 14 points.
Hey, even Pau Gasol hit a three-pointer to go with a slam that brought Staples Center to its feet. Gasol was the only Laker starter not in double figures with nine points.
The Lakers extended their lead to 19 on a Bryant basket before the Nuggets went on an 8-0 run. But Sessions answered on a goaltending call and Bynum got the slam on a feed from Gasol. The Lakers were leading by 15 with two minutes left in the quarter.
The Nuggets also closed out the quarter with a 6-2 run.
But the Lakers looked like they had the game in hand. Can their 13-point lead hold up?