The Denver Nuggets hang tough for almost 48 minutes, they led 71-70 heading into the fourth quarter, but the Los Angeles Lakers got two big baskets in the closing seconds to seal a 92-88 win on Sunday night and grab a 3-1 lead in their first-round playoff series.
Kobe Bryant scored 22 points, Andrew Bynum added 19 points and Pau Gasol chipped in 13 points and nine boards for the Lakers, but it was their supporting cast that helped them steal one from Denver.
Jordan Hill posted a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds, Ramon Sessions had 12 points, including the go-ahead 3-pointer with 48 seconds left, and Steve Blake scored 10 points, and made another shot from beyond the arc with 18 seconds remaining that extended the Lakers lead to six points.
It proved to be the dagger to the Nuggets' collective resolve.
Danilo Gallinari led the Nuggets with 20 points, Andre Miller had 15 points, while Ty Lawson finished with 11 points and six assists.
The Lakers can wrap it up Tuesday night when the series shifts back to Staples Center for Game 5.
(Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)