Originally written on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 4/29/12
LOS ANGELES -- Andrew Bynum said after finishing the Lakers' final pre-playoff practice Saturday: "We're well aware we need to come out and make a statement in the first game." Bynum wanted the Lakers to re-establish themselves as a threat to win what would be a third NBA championship in four years by dominating the Denver Nuggets, and that's just what happened Sunday at Staples Center. The Lakers' defense was smothering, and it was Bynum who anchored the paint and turned high-percentage Denver shots into disappointing results for the NBA's highest-scoring team in the regular season. The Lakers won, 103-88, and Bynum piled up 10 blocks - tying the NBA record held by Mark Eaton and Hakeem Olajuwon for a playoff game. Bynum added 10 points and 13 rebounds for a triple-double, his career first and the Lakers' first in the postseason since Magic Johnson's in the 1991 NBA Finals. The Nuggets scored 104.1 points on 47.6 percent shooting in the regular season, when they roared to ...
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