DENVER, April 29 (Ticker) -- The Denver Nuggets had a chance to draw even in their Western Conference first-round series, but the Los Angeles Clippers put an emphatic end to those dreams.

Corey Maggette scored 19 points and Shaun Livingston contributed 16 and six assists off the bench to help as the Clippers posted a 100-86 victory over the Nuggets to take a 3-1 series lead.

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All-Star Elton Brand, Sam Cassell and Cuttino Mobley each scored 11 points for sixth-seeded Los Angeles, which shot 49 percent (37-of-75) from the field and moved within one win of its first playoff series triumph since 1976, when the franchise was known as the Buffalo Braves.

"This is great for our organization," said Maggette, who made 11-of-12 free throws. "We're just going to go home and be in front of our fans. This is a great opportunity for us to past this and move onto the next round."

Los Angeles can wrap up the series at home in Game Five on Monday. "We have to go home and close this series out," Los Angeles coach Mike Dunleavy said. "We need to continue to do the good things we've been doing."

The Clippers built 52-40 edge when Maggette and Livingston drained consecutive jumpers with 3 1/2 minutes remaining in the second quarter and held a 56-45 bulge at the break by limiting the third-seeded Nuggets to just 1-of-10 shooting from the arc.

"I didn't think we played a playoff basketball game in the first half," Nuggets coach George Karl said. "We're searching almost every game for our confidence. Now you play it like an NCAA tournament game. We cannot lose one more time."

Carmelo Anthony, who scored 17 points, made 1-of-2 free throws eight minutes into the second half to cut the deficit to 67-58, but Denver got no closer as Los Angeles bridged the quarters with an 18-7 surge to open a commanding 87-65 advantage with just a little more than 10 minutes remaining.

"This one really hurts to lose on our home court the way we did tonight," said Anthony, who made just 5-of-17 shots. "It was just embarrassing. I really think we gave up. I'm not disappointed in my own game. I can't play against two or three guys out there on the court."

The Clippers got 47 points from their reserves. "Our bench came in and did a great job," Dunleavy said. "There was a lot of balance to our scoring and good ball movement." Once again the Nuggets struggled from the arc, going just 5-of-22 in Game Four. They are shooting a dismal 20 percent (11-of-55) of their 3-pointers for the series.

Marcus Camby and Andre Miller scored 14 points apiece and Earl Boykins added 11 for Denver, which shot 41 percent (35-of-84) overall and scored 40 points in the paint. "We were given a lot of open looks," Anthony said. "You can't beat a team like the Clippers when you shoot poor as a team."