The Los Angeles Lakers look to win their fifth straight game tonight against the young Chicago Bulls led by rising star point guard Derrick Rose who is averaging 25.2 points per game. Let’s look at the projected starting line0up for both teams.
Lakers – Bulls
PG Derek Fisher – Derrick Rose
SG Kobe Bryant – Keith Bogans
SF Ron Artest – Luol Deng
PF Lamar Odom – Taj Gibson
C Pau Gasol – Joakim Noah
The Chicago Bulls have won 7 out of their last 10 games. They have only beat one .500 + record team this season (Denver Nuggets) by only two points. The Bulls are currently in a 7 game road trip.
Derrick Rose has improved in a few statistics from the past seasons he’s had. He is shooting a career high 34% beyond the arc and 8.5 dimes a game. On Friday night against the Mavericks, Taj Gibson pulled a career high 18 rebounds that night. Speaking of rebounds, the Bulls are the third highest rebounding team behind the Minnesota Timberwolves and Los Angeles Lakers. Kyle Korver has been lighting it up shooting a career high 56.3% from downtown. This team has depth with C.J. Watson and Ronnie Brewer at back-court but have yet to prove they can be a factor in the game. With Carlos Boozer on the mend to return with the team, the Bulls will just get better.
After having help from Pau Gasol to blow out the Warriors two nights ago, the Lakers will face a little more experienced team tonight. Gasol broke his double-double streak ending it at 7 straight games. The bench looked solid Sunday night as they totaled up 44 points. Phil Jackson stated “It is very important” that the starters got rest early for Tuesdays game.
In order for the Lakers to win tonight, they must keep Noah off the boards and slow down Rose. The Bulls don’t seem to have many scoring options besides Rose, Korver, and Noah. Noah works hard on both ends of the floor but the key for Pau Gasol to dominate against him is to out run and be quicker than Joakim during the fast breaks. The Bulls have a hard time against the Lakers in the paint with the length defense of Lamar and Pau. Luol Deng’s game has slipped a bit, shooting 34% in his last three games. Artest should be able to hold his shooting around or below that percentage if he stays quick on his feet.
Lakers – Andrew Bynum (knee), Theo Ratliff (knee)
Bulls – Carlos Boozer (hand)
Bulls @ Lakers
Staples Center, Los Angeles CA
Radio: 710/1330 AM ESPN
Also be sure to participate in this exciting chat with Lakers legend Norm Nixon during tonight’s game!