Lakers-Nuggets: L.A. Looks for Sweep As Denver Quarrels Among Themselves

Andrew KneelandSenior Writer IApril 28, 2008

A soap opera couldn't be written more perfectly.
 
With his Nuggets down 0-3 in a best of seven series, All-Star Carmelo Anthony has accused everyone—including head coach George Karl—of quitting.
 
"Just don't sit there!" Anthony screamed at his coach, who was sitting on the bench watching his backup players finish yet another blow-out loss to the Lakers.
 
These comments have sparked some debate among the Nugget camp, who took spent no time on the court on Sunday to "regroup" and "re-energize".
 
Denver forward Linas Kleiza assumed the role of peacekeeper:
 
"I don't think he meant it. Nobody quit...Nobody quit on each other. It's just him being the competitor he is. Sometimes things like that come out of peoples' mouths after tough losses."
 
The Lakers, meanwhile, have remained quiet about the whole situation as they continue to dominate like they've done all season. They lead the season series against Denver 6-0.

Whatever surprises tonight may bring to the Lakers, Kobe Bryant is convinced that he and his team are up to the challenge.

"Close-out games are always very, very tough...They play loose and they tend to fight a lot more. It's going to be tough."

But would he even consider playing less than his best and giving Denver the possibility of winning? Absolutely not.

"You never want to give a team any kind of momentum,"

Bryant heard the ever familiar "MVP!" chant as he walked onto the court in Denver, and said that he extremely comfortable, and ready to close out the series.

The bottom line is this: Los Angeles hasn't scored fewer than 102 points this postseason, and they have won all previous playoff games by a margin of at least 14 points.

The only reason that could change is if Denver has a dying spark. Kobe and Company are determined to put it out.