Nuggets 120, Lakers 101

FIRST QUARTER
Carmelo Anthony is stone cold from the floor, missing his first eight shots from the field. Nene and Kenyon Martin combine for 13 points and 10 rebounds. The Lakers are just as cold, getting nine points from Kobe Bryant and just 10 from everyone else

NUGGETS 22, LAKERS 19

SECOND QUARTER

The Nuggets to on an 8-0 to open the quarter and extend their lead out to as much as 39-24 before the Lakers come back. Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol lead the Lakers on a 18-6 run to cut into the lead.

NUGGETS 52, LAKERS 45

THIRD QUARTER

The Lakers resort to shooting a bunch of 3-pointers and it doesn’t go well. Sasha Vujacic finally makes one, but it’s too little too late. LA is 3-for-9 in the period from behind the arc, contributing to its poor overall shooting and embarrassing 47-29 rebounding deficit.

NUGGETS 77, LAKERS 66

FOURTH QUARTER

The Lakers hang around within striking distance until Denver goes on an 18-7 run to stretch the lead out to 120-99 on Dahntay Jones dunk with under a minute to go

HERO
JR Smith had had a rather miserable series until Monday night, scoring just 21 points on 25 percent shooting in the first three games. Monday night he turned all that around, shooting 7-of-19 from the field and nailing four 3-pointers to finish with 24 points. In a game where Carmelo Anthony was hobbled by an ankle injury and a stomach issue, the Nuggets could not have won without Smith.

GOAT
Hard to pick just one Laker as the team combined to shoot a wretched 9 of 31 from behind the 3-point arc and 24-of-35 at the free throw line. Kobe Bryant kept the Lakers in it with 34 points, so we’ll forgive his 2-for-10 from behind the 3-point arc. Hard to overlook Derek Fisher’s 1-for-5 though.

STAT
58-40
Margin by which the Nuggets out-rebounded the Lakers in Monday’s 120-101 win. Twenty of those rebounds came off the offensive glass.

QUOTE

“I’m probably not going to be calling timeout if I don’t have to. Because I think Odom is going to be covering the sonofa(gun), whoever I put in there.”

–Denver coach George Karl on whether he’s drawn up any new inbounds plays after Trevo Ariza’s two steals at the ends of Games 1 and 3.

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