DENVER — With leading scorer Kobe Bryant scratched because of swelling in his right knee, the Lakers struggled to score tonight. Andrew Bynum sat out for the ninth game because of a strained left Achilles tendon, so the Lakers were without two-fifths of their starting lineup and a combined 43 points. Ron Artest led the Lakers with 15 points in the first half and Pau Gasol added 14. The Lakers shot only 33.3 percent. Sasha Vujacic scored two in place of Bryant. Shannon Brown replaced Vujacic to start the second half.