Despite illness, Kobe plays vs. Nuggets

Kobe Bryant is playing in Game 6 against Denver after missing the morning shoot-around because of intestinal flu-like symptoms.

“He’s holding down fluids and stuff like that,” Lakers Coach Mike Brown said 90 minutes before tip-off. “He’ll play.”

The Lakers lead the first-round series against the Nuggets, 3-2.

Bryant averaged 31.2 points in the first five games of the playoffs, including a 43-point outburst in Game 5.

“They said there’s no minute restriction,” Brown said of Bryant. “Obviously we’ll watch him as best we can.”

If the Lakers win, they begin the next round Saturday at Oklahoma City. If they lose to Denver, there will be a Game 7 on Saturday at Staples Center.

–Mike Bresnahan