Lakers vs. Nuggets: Instant Reaction and Analysis from LA’s Game 1 Statement Win

After trouncing the Denver Nuggets 103-88 in a commanding Game 1 win where Los Angeles controlled the glass and defensive end, Kobe Bryant, Andrew Bynum and Co. took a shot across the bow and sent a clear message to the West: Bring on the Thunder.

Headlined by a Bill Russell-like triple-double from their All-Star center Andrew Bynum (10 points, 13 rebounds, 10 blocks), the Los Angeles Lakers dominated the entire game of their opening series from wire-to-wire with stellar defense, unmatched presence down low and point production from everywhere on the depth chart.

Andrew Bynum, Pau Gasol and Jordan Hill made life difficult for any Nugget who dared enter the paint.

Second-half runs made by the Denver Nuggets were completely stifled by a team steal, a turnover or an Andrew Bynum block. 

The backcourt for the highest-scoring team in the NBA was rendered ineffective Sunday with speedster Ty Lawson and Arron Afflalo combining for a total of 16 points on 6-of-22 shooting.

And all this without their defensive stopper Metta World Peace who is serving his suspension for knocking out Thunder guard James Harden with a vicious elbow last week.

After one game, it's easy to jump to far-reaching conclusions, but it's hard not to consider this series all but locked for the Lakeshow.

Denver's main man Danilo Gallinari did all he could to keep his team in the game, offering 19 points on 7-of-14 from the field. Yet as a team, the Nuggets barely sniffed the double-digit lead held by the Lakers throughout the entire game.

Fourteen points in the first quarter from the league's most point-prolific team?

That's getting it done.

Through magnificent team and individual defensive performances, the Lakers crushed any hope the Nuggets had of producing the upset. The rest of the opening round is just a formality for Los Angeles at this point.

Meanwhile, across ...

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