The Los Angeles Lakers looked to build off Sunday’s win in the second game of a back-to-back but instead failed to keep pace with the up-and-coming Chicago Bulls, suffering a 121-103 blowout loss.
Talen Horton-Tucker kicked things off for the Lakers with a corner three and followed it up with a layup in transition after a blown dunk from Tony Bradley. Anthony Davis took the responsibility for guarding DeMar DeRozan, but the Bulls swingman was able to find enough room to score and give Chicago an early 18-11 lead.
The Bulls interestingly went to an ultra-small lineup that worked as they were able to quickly double Davis and force the ball out of his hands, throwing the Laker offense off-balance. Russell Westbrook was able to stop the bleeding with a couple of tough finishes, but the Lakers found themselves trailing 33-25 after one.
Los Angeles was able to cut the deficit in half thanks to Westbrook and Horton-Tucker before DeRozan settled things for Chicago with his patented midrange jumper. However, with Westbrook and Davis off the floor, the Lakers struggled to score and allowed the Bulls to remain firmly in control.
Zach LaVine kept Chicago’s hot shooting going as he drilled a pair of difficult threes to extend their lead to 13. Los Angeles made a small run at the end other quarter to build some momentum, but LaVine and DeRozan converted from deep and left the Lakers looking at a 57-48 deficit going into the halftime locker room.
Carmelo Anthony was able to get the offense for the Lakers going, though the team had issues stopping the Bulls’ talented trio of perimeter players. Chicago really began to pour it on as they ran off of L.A.’s misses and LaVine punctuated their run with a dunk.
The Lakers seemingly had no answers for the Bulls who were happy to switch and rotate behind the action of the play, stalling out their offense in the process. Things went from bad to worse when Davis was ejected from the game after arguing with the referee and the Lakers went into the fourth down 94-73.
L.A. finally showed some signs of life when they began to aggressively attack the basket, and Horton-Tucker gave Staples Center something to cheer for with an explosive dunk. However, Lonzo Ball seemed to extinguish any chance of a comeback after catching fire from three and putting the Bulls back up by 20.
The Lakers tried to shoot themselves back into the game, but like most of the night they failed to get much to go down and they would take home another disappointing loss.
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