Kobe Bryant scored 38 points to lead the Los Angeles Lakers to a 104-100 win over the Denver Nuggets Tuesday night in Game 2 of their first round NBA playoff series at Staples Center. The Lakers were able to withstand a pair of late runs by Denver. The Lakers led by as many as 19 points, but the Nuggets cut the lead to four points with three minutes remaining.
The Lakers hold a 2-0 series advantage. In their franchise history, the Lakers have won 42 of their 43 series that they led 2-0, losing only in the first round in 1993 to the Phoenix Suns.
Bryant made 15 of his 29 field goals and had four rebounds for the Lakers, who shot 44.8% in Game 2. Andrew Bynum had a career playoff high 27 points and nine rebounds for the Lakers, and has made 17 of 27 field goals (63.0%)in the first two games of the series.
Pau Gasol added 13 points, 10 rebounds, and five assists in the win. Ramon Sessions scored 14 for the Lakers, including 10 points in the fourth quarter.
Ty Lawson led Denver with 25 points and seven assists. The Nuggets outrebounded the Lakers 52-48.
The Lakers are 19-4 all-time in the playoffs against the Nuggets, including 11-2 in Los Angeles. Game 3 is Friday night in Denver.
For more news and notes on the Lakers or this first round playoff series against Denver, be sure to read Silver Screen and Roll.