Faced with one of the toughest tasks in the NBA, playing at the Pepsi Center on the second night of a back-to-back, the Clippers were going to have to be sound in all areas to leave Denver with a win. Short-handed and sleepy, the Clippers didn’t execute – especially in the third quarter – in a 107-92 defeat Thursday night. Prior to the game, Clippers head coach Vinny Del Negro stressed two things – controlling the pace and defending the three-point shot, and his team was able to do neither – particularly in the second half. The Nuggets blew a tied game open in the third, scoring 36 points in the quarter while hitting 6-of-7 3-pointers. “Our three-point defense has been terrible,” Chris Paul said. “…That’s not a great three-point shooting team, and tonight they were lights out.” Defending the three-point shot has been an issue for the Clippers all season, with opposing teams hitting 37 percent. Only eight teams in the NBA allow a higher percentage. But in the Clippers’ last seven losses, teams have been hitting the three at an incredibly high rate. Over that stretch, teams have made 71 three-point shots in 144 attempts (49.3 percent). Denver hit 11-of-23 from beyond the arc Thursday.