The Los Angeles Lakers couldn’t stop a rampaging Jimmy Butler, losing 118-110 to the Chicago Bulls. Butler sliced through the Lakers’ defense like a hot machete through butter, scoring a game-high 40 points to carry Chicago to victory.
This was a bad loss for the Lakers, who had a great opportunity catching the Bulls on the second-half of a back-to-back on a night that Dwyane Wade sat out for rest purposes. The team played horrendous defense as a unit, never found a vibe outside of an insane stretch early in the game from Lou Williams, and gave up careless turnovers throughout the second half.
Jordan Clarkson struggled immensely, going just 1-for-12 from the field. D’Angelo Russell made his return after sitting out against the San Antonio Spurs but didn’t make an impact. He scored eight points, dished a low-key seven assists and was responsible for two turnovers.
Larry Nance, Jr. scored a career-high 18 points, beating his defenders for a handful of nifty lobs. Williams scored a team-high 25 points, making five of his six three-point attempts. The Bulls killed the Lakers on the glass, outrebounding them 56-37. The Lakers gave up 16 offensive boards that turned into 21 second chance points.
Los Angeles was within striking distance, cutting the Bulls’ lead down to five with a minute left in the fourth quarter, but that was only out of Chicago stumbling over itself down the stretch. The Bulls led by as many as 15 points, which is far more indicative of where the score should have been with how poorly the Lakers played.
It’s better to move on from this one for LA. The Oklahoma City Thunder are heading to Staples Center Tuesday, setting the table before two straight games against the Golden State Warriors.