Facing elimination from the playoffs, the Lakers put together a strong performance Saturday evening to beat the Nuggets by the score of 96-87 and advance to the second round. Strong play from Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum allowed for the Lakers to win Game 7 at the Staples Center. Before they head to Oklahoma City to take on the Thunder, let's head out to Los Angeles to catch up on the latest from the Lakers.
- After a season of turmoil in which he nearly ended up with a different team, Gasol dialed back the clock Saturday night and delivered one of the biggest performances of his career, writes Lee Jenkins of SI.com. In order to get ready for the game, Gasol had coaches go at him in the paint while wearing football shoulder pads during practice on Friday. The drill was a success as the Spaniard scored 23 points to go along with 17 rebounds and six assists.
- Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports says Metta World Peace was ready to get back on the court and lift his teammates after sitting for seven games due to suspension. While he was unapologetic about his actions toward James Harden, World Peace showed no signs of rust on the court as he scored 15 points and grabbed five rebounds in the victory.
- Steve Blake channeled his inner Kobe Bryant with the effort he put together against the Nuggets on Saturday, reports ESPNLosAngeles.com's Dave McMenamin. The former Maryland star took his play to the next level by shooting 5-for-6 on three-pointers for a career-playoff high of 19 points. Without Blake, the Lakers would be watching the second round of the playoffs on television rather than heading to Oklahoma City on Monday for Game 1.