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Los Angeles, CA (Sports Network) - It took seven games and a series of trials but the Los Angeles Lakers finally put away the Denver Nuggets.

On the cusp of elimination, the sixth-seeded Nuggets stormed back with two straight wins and held a lead in the fourth quarter on Saturday, but the Lakers persevered, getting 23 points, 17 rebounds and six assists from Pau Gasol en route to a 96-87 victory.

Los Angeles, seeded third, will visit the second-seeded Oklahoma City Thunder on Monday in the Western Conference semifinals.

Al Harrington and Ty Lawson scored 24 points apiece for the Nuggets, who fell just one victory short of their first-ever series win over the Lakers.