Lakers fall to the Nuggets in Game 3 - KB24

By Tesh Patel / kobebryant.com

The Denver Nuggets defeated the Los Angeles Lakers 99-84 in game 3 of their 1st round playoff series.

Denver was led by Ty Lawson, who finished with 25 points and 7 assists, and energized by the improved play of JaVale McGee and Kenneth Faried, who combined for 28 points and 30 rebounds.

The Lakers trailed in the 1st half by as many as 24 points, primarily due to their inability to stop Lawson’s dribble penetration, which led to either a layup or an open 3 from the Nuggets shooters.  Further, LA was outhustled early where they were outrebounded 17-6 overall and failed to register a single offensive rebound by the end of the 1st quarter.

Kobe Bryant finished with 22 points (6-23 shooting) , 6 rebounds, and 6 assists.  Andrew Bynum bounced back from slow 1st half start to score 18 points and grab 12 rebounds.

The Lakers maintain a 2-1 series lead, with game 4 scheduled for Sunday.

Quarter 1:

  • Ebanks for 3, nice kickout by Bynum.
  • Nuggets running aggressive doubles at Bynum on the catch.
  • Gasol missed 2 open midrange shots.
  • Kobe with great footwork, pivot and lay-in.
  • Nuggets are outhustling LA early on the offensive boards.
  • Ebanks scores with the assist from Kobe off of a nice give and go cut.
  • Kobe looking sharp early on 2-3 shooting.
  • Afflalo and Lawson leading a scoring spree, Nuggets are on a 9-0 run. Nuggets 19 Lakers 12.
  • Lawson continues to attack, drawing FTs.
  • More Ty Lawson: this time with a fadeaway over Blake.
  • How is Kobe not shooting FTs on that foul call? ..clearly a shot attempt.
  • At the end of the 1st quarter: Nuggets 30 Lakers 14.

Observations:

  • Denver playing with a sense of desperation, outworking LA on the offensive boards, 6-0, and 17-6 overall.
  • Lawson is getting to the basket at will, minimal resistance from the Laker guards and frontline.
  • Bynum and Gasol off to slow starts, combining for 3 boards in the 1st. Bynum is also scoreless.

Quarter 2:

  • Lawson continues his scoring assault, 16 points and 4 assists in 14 minutes. Ouch.
  • Sessions laying bricks early from the perimeter.
  • Nuggets 41, Lakers 21.
  • Blake with a 3 off of a nice penetration from Sessions.
  • Sessions hits Barnes on a semi-break.
  • Kobe hits a 3 off of a drive/kick from Blake.
  • Kobe attacks off of a Denver TO, draws FTs.
  • Denver 43, LA 31.
  • Jordan Hill is all hustle, tossed to the ground after an offensive rebound, calls a timeout before the tie-up.
  • Kobe for 3 with the shot clock winding down, Lakers down 11.
  • Jordan Hill owning the boards, Lakers D is starting show up, Blake draws a charge on Miller.
  • McGee just scored on Bynum, which should never ever happen.
  • Denver 47-Lakers 34
  • Sessions picking up his aggression, 5 points in the quarter and some nice assists.
  • At Halftime: Nuggets 55 Lakers 39.

Observations:

  • An early 3 pt barrage by Denver opened up a 24 point lead.
  • Sparked by Jordan Hill, LA tightened up defensively, key 3-pointers by Kobe and Blake is making the deficit manageable.
  • JaVale McGee outplayed Bynum in the 2nd, outscoring him 4-0 and outrebounding him 4-2.
  • At the half, McGee has 8 pts and 9 rebounds, and Faried has added 6 pts and 10 rebounds.
  • Denver just crushing LA on the boards, 31-18.

Quarter 3:

  • Sessions with a court length feed to Gasol for the jam, Denver 55 LA 43.
  • Bynum scores with a baseline hook, 10 pt game.
  • Sessions with a monster jam down the lane!
  • Kobe wins a jump ball then hits a 3 with the shot clock winding down. Den 61 LA 50.
  • Ty Lawson scores. Again.
  • Bynum scores again off of a beautiful feed from Kobe.
  • Gasol can’t shoot tonight, but running the floor like a mad man, dunks off of a Bynum pass.
  • Kobe to Bynum again, and-1! Den 67 LA 60.
  • Bynum scores off of Kobe’s miss, down 4 J
  • Miller scores a layup.  At the end of 3: Den 72 LA 65.

Observations:

  • Lakers defending with purpose, limiting Denver in transition
  • Gasol’s jumper is broke…hasn’t made an open J all night
  • Lakers are now focused on both ends, the offense is coming to life.  Bynum is scoring, Kobe making plays for others.
  • Triple Double Watch: Sessions with 9 pts, 7 rebounds, 6 assists

Quarter 4:

  • McGee has been going toe-to-toe with Bynum tonight scoring off of a putback
  • Lakers down by 9 after Gasol fell asleep on a Faried run out
  • Bynum late to pass out of the double, TO
  • Sessions hits a pull-up J, nice all-around game tonight
  • Faried with a monster jam, no contest by the Lakers D.
  • Bynum with another TO, leads to a fast-break finish by Andre Miller.  Lakers down 11.
  • Finally, Gasol hits a J..3 pointer, Den 80 LA 72.
  • Kobe 6-20 tonight, 1 for his last 8.
  • McGee now has 16 pts and 13 rebounds. Stunned.
  • Bryant “fouls” Gallo. Rubbish. Denver 86, Lakers 76
  • Miller seals it with a 3, extends lead to 12
  • Final Score: Nuggets 99, Lakers 84

Observations:

  • Gasol has been brilliant in the transition game and passing department, but awful defensively.  Faried is eating his lunch.
  • Bynum with 2 key turnovers to help Denver push their lead back to double digits.
  • With the exception of a Miller jumper, Nuggets have scored all of their 4th qtr points in the paint with 5:12 remaining.
  • Kobe couldn’t buy a shot in the 2nd half.

 

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