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These two teams could not be built more differently. With two proven stars and a third aging but effective, the Los Angeles Lakers have always felt comfortable in the half court offense—and why not?
They have arguably the best closer in the game, possess mammoth length in the paint and have wily veterans that know how to gain position and make tough shots to slow down the action and create mismatches.
The Denver Nuggets, on the other hand, are built to fly. Speedy young players at almost every position, no heralded, unquestioned star (Ty's not there yet), a plethora of lineup looks to throw at you and a push it up the floor, run-and-gun mentality.
As has been shown in the last two games (and the whole season), when the Nuggets play fast for 48 minutes, they tend to be one of the more difficult teams to beat. They have several players that struggle in the halfcourt, but flourish on the run, like McGee, Faried and, of course, Lawson. And they have two point guards that know how to push the pace with Lawson's flat-out speed and Miller's incredible down-court vision.
The only way the Nuggets have a chance to win this game is to play their game. If they get caught in a crawling, halfcourt matchup, they can pack up their lockers and call it a season. They must keep up a fast pace to run the Lakers out of their own building.