Los Angeles managed to keep it close in the first half despite Chicago leading by 13 or 14 points multiple times. Russell Westbrook’s rim pressure played a key role in helping L.A. claw back.
However, the Lakers once again faltered in the third quarter. They came out with no energy as the Bulls hit shot after shot, and it all culminated in Anthony Davis’ ejection. Davis needed to tie his shoe but got mad at the referee for allowing play to continue as he was in the process of tying it.
That essentially sealed the win for Chicago. The Bulls eventually led by 28 points, so the entire fourth quarter was just garbage-time minutes.
Here’s how the Lakers graded individually:
Russell Westbrook: C
Westbrook had the most success when he attacked the rim and forced Chicago’s guards to hone in on his speed. However, he strayed from that as the game progressed and settled for jumpers.
He finished with 25 points, eight assists and six rebounds. He made 9-of-10 free throws but went 0-of-6 from deep. Poor shot selection caused his grade to decrease.
A game to forget for Avery Bradley. He made a triple in the first half off a dribble handoff from Anthony Davis but struggled to make an impact. He was a minus-27 on the night, which was a game-low.
Talen Horton-Tucker: B-minus
Talen Horton-Tucker finished with a career-high 28 points, despite a chunk of it coming when the game didn’t matter anymore. Still, he made all six of his free throws and shot 4-of-7 from deep at one point before chucking two deep ones.
Horton-Tucker also couldn’t stick with DeMar DeRozan, who dropped 38 points. He let DeRozan rise up for a jumper with no strong contest too many times.
Carmelo Anthony made some mid-range shots and layups but missed all four of his 3s. The Lakers needed him to stretch the floor against Chicago’s small lineup but that just wasn’t the case.
Anthony Davis: C
It was a really quiet game for Davis’ standards. The Bulls sent 15 double teams to Davis whenever he touched the ball, and it made matters worse because Chicago often deployed Derrick Jones Jr. to defend Davis.
The Lakers failed to exploit the size advantage, and Davis was eventually ejected after finishing with 20 points (6-of-9 FG, 8-of-9 FT) and six rebounds in 28 minutes.
Malik Monk: F
Malik Monk played 27 minutes off the bench but was torched on defense and couldn’t score on offense. He went 1-of-5 overall and 0-of-3 from deep.
Wayne Ellington: F
Wayne Ellington drilled his first 3-pointer of the night — a rainbow over Lonzo Ball’s outstretched hands — but struggled after. He finished the game shooting 1-of-6 from downtown.
Rajon Rondo: F
Rajon Rondo played 18 minutes and looked passive all night, which has been a recurring theme for him lately. The Lakers need him to penetrate the paint more if he won’t look for jumpers out on the perimeter. His only points came in the game’s closing minutes.
Dwight Howard: D
Dwight Howard put up five points and six rebounds in 13 minutes, including two steals and two blocks. His deficient hands hurt him again because he could’ve had more easy layup opportunities. He also went 1-of-4 from the free-throw line, which could’ve helped the deficit.
Kent Bazemore: F
Kent Bazemore, who didn’t play in the previous game, entered in the third quarter to see if he could make a difference guarding DeRozan. It didn’t work. He accumulated four fouls in three minutes and finished with five fouls in 12 minutes.
DeAndre Jordan: N/A
DeAndre Jordan played the last seven minutes of the game and had four points (an alley-oop dunk and a transition dunk), five rebounds and two blocks. It was a nice shift after not playing in the previous game, but it happened too late to earn a grade.