Denver Nuggets 111, Lakers 99 (final)
The Denver Nuggets pulled away in the fourth quarter, easily defeating the Lakers, 111-99.
Center Timofey Mozgov had a big game off the bench for the Nuggets, tying his career high with 23 points in 28 minutes.
The Lakers got double-doubles from both Pau Gasol (25 points and 12 rebounds) and Jordan Hill (18 and 15) but it wasn’t enough as the Lakers were outrebounded by seven by Denver, 58-51.
Steve Blake, starting at point guard for injured Steve Nash (back), also delivered a double-double with 15 points and 11 assists.
While Denver shot only 40% from the field, they worked their way to the line with 37 free throws to the Lakers’ 26.
Playing on the second night of back-to-back games, the Lakers failed for the fourth time this season to string together two wins in a row.
With the loss, the Lakers’ record dips to 4-6. They host the Memphis Grizzlies at home on Friday night.
The Nuggets improve to 3-4, also playing on Friday at home against the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Nuggets 83, Lakers 79 (end of third quarter)
The Lakers stayed close to the Nuggets throughout the third quarter, closing to within four points after 36 minutes.
Timofey Mozgov has 17 points on 6-of-9 shooting to help carry the offense for Denver.
Jordan Hill sat late with his fifth foul after notching a double-double (15 points and 11 rebounds) in 22 1/2 minutes.
The Lakers shot 44.3% from the field while holding Denver to only 37.3% shooting. The Nuggets took 35 free throws compared to the Lakers’ 13.
Pau Gasol also has a double-double for the Lakers with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Kenneth Faried and Ty Lawson contributed 15 points apiece for Denver.
Nuggets 60, Lakers 54 (halftime)
Jordan Hill helped the Lakers battle back in Denver, closing a 13-point deficit to six by halftime.
In his second start of the season, Hill scored a game-high 13 points while collecting seven rebounds, five on the offensive glass.
Kenneth Faried and Ty Lawson led the Nuggets with 10 points apiece. Denver shot 42.6% from the field with only four turnovers.
The Lakers caught Denver in rebounding with 26 each, holding a 17-8 advantage over the home team in the second quarter.
Nuggets 33, Lakers 28 (end of first quarter)
The Lakers held the Nuggets without a basket for 2 1/2 minutes, pulling ahead by eight. Denver quickly responded, overtaking the Lakers by 10.
Nick Young hit a late three-pointer to help the Lakers close the gap to five after the opening 12 minutes.
Lakers point guard Steve Blake led all scorers with seven points. Kenneth Faried and Timofey Mozgov scored six apiece for the Nuggets.
The Lakers shot 50% from the field but struggled on the boards. Denver shot 46.4%, holding an 18-9 rebounding advantage in the quarter.
The Lakers (4-5) travel to Denver to play the Nuggets (2-4) on Wednesday night in their second game on consecutive nights.
The Nuggets are struggling so far this season but historicallythey dominate teams visiting on the second night of back-to-back games.
While the Lakers might have a chance to catch the Nuggets in a lull, as they work to learn a new system under former Laker and new Coach Brian Shaw, a Lakers’ win on the road would be surprising.
For a more in-depth breakdown, check out Preview: Lakers vs. Nuggets.