Sunday, March 10, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Lakers 90, Bulls 81
By Nick Friedell
LOS ANGELES -- Let's take a quick look at how the Los Angeles Lakers earned a 90-81 win over the Chicago Bulls on Sunday afternoon at the Staples Center.
How it happened: Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 19 points as every Los Angeles starter scored in double figures. Dwight Howard and Steve Nash added 16 points each as Howard pulled down 21 rebounds. Nate Robinson led the Bulls with 19 points and seven assists, but the Bulls offense struggled all day to make shots when it needed them.
What it means: The Bulls got crushed on the glass in the first three quarters and this is what coach Tom Thibodeau will harp on after the game, along with the fact the defense wasn't sharp. But the defense shouldn't be a bigger issue than the fact that the Bulls' offense continues to look broken. Thibodeau's bunch shot just 37.1 percent from the field and could not find any rhythm yet again. Robinson provided most of the offense for the Bulls, but aside from his performance and Joakim Noah's energy, the Bulls looked lifeless on the offensive end. They're getting open looks but they aren't knocking them down. Playing without Kirk Hinrich (foot), Rip Hamilton (lower back) and Taj Gibson (knee) has shined a bright spotlight on the fact that the Bulls don't have the type of depth or talent that they've had in years past. They must play a near flawless game to win against talented teams and they didn't do that against the Lakers. They were disjointed on the offensive end and looked tired down the stretch -- a recurring trend for this team.
Hits: Noah was a bright spot for the Bulls, scoring 18 points, grabbing 17 rebounds and playing hard on both ends.
Misses: Carlos Boozer, Luol Deng and Marco Belinelli combined to go just 14-for-47.
Stat of the night: The Bulls shot just 37.1 percent from the field.
What's next: The Bulls will stay in Los Angeles for the next couple days before facing the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday night.