The Province

LA LAKERS AT DENVER, GAME 3, 7:30 P.M. PT

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DENVER — Speedy point guardty Lawson believes more running and better rebounding will get the Denver Nuggets back into their first-round series with the Los Angeles Lakers.

And coach George Karl thinks it boils down to controllin­g the paint, preventing Lakers centre Andrew Bynum from dominating down low. Or the trick to turning this series around could be something as simple as this: Playing with a lead for once.

The Nuggets haven’t even led for so much as one trip down the floor in falling into a 2-0 hole against the Lakers. That’s why the Nuggets are hoping for a fast start in Game 3 tonight at Pepsi Center.

They hope to jump out on top and get the boisterous crowd into the action early. Maybe that will provide a spark.

“We definitely have to have a good start, especially against them,”nuggets forward Danilo Gallinari said.

Denver was blown out in Game 1 as Bynum posted a tripledoub­le with 10 points, 10 blocks and 13 rebounds in a 103-88 rout. But there was a point in Game 2 when Denver had the Lakers a little nervous. Trailing by as many as 19 in the third quarter, the Nuggets stormed back to make it a game, only to fade at the finish and fall 104-100. They need to use that comeback as motivation for Game 3. “In the second half, looked like we played with a lot of heart,” Lawson said. “If we get that into the game on Friday, then I think we have a good chance of winning.”

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