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Lakers ready to face a tough Nuggets team in Denver

January 21, 2011 | 12:13 pm

The Lakers have lost four of their last five games to the Nuggets, including a 118-112 loss in Denver last November.

The Nuggets produced a 33-19 fourth quarter in that game, which overwhelmed the Lakers at Pepsi Center.

The Lakers hope to change things when they face the Nuggets on Friday night in Denver.

But the Lakers have lost four games in a row in Denver.

"They just play us extremely well here," Kobe Bryant said at the Lakers' afternoon shoot-around Friday. "Obviously we've had some match-ups in the playoffs. It seems to always be an exciting game. They've gotten the best of us the last four times here."

The Lakers had problems on defense against the Dallas Mavericks during L.A.'s loss Wednesday night.

At practice Thursday and before the shoot-around Friday, the Lakers watched film of their defensive problems, with the hopes of making improvements.

"We've done a pretty good job defensively in terms of holding teams at the right percentage," Bryant said. "There are slips there momentum-wise that kind of shift the game a little bit. The last game was a big step back. But over the last 10 games, we're cool with the way we've been playing defensively."

-- Broderick Turner in Denver