You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Lakers Final Score: Road Bulls Spoil LeBron James Return, Win 118-108

All Lakers on FanNation 3/26/2023 Alex Kirschenbaum
© Provided by All Lakers on FanNation

Pat Bev strikes back.

Despite a late-game push and the return of All-Star small forward LeBron James (in a rare bench role), your Los Angeles Lakers fell at home to old pal Patrick Beverley and his visiting Chicago Bulls today during a matinee matchup.

At the start of the bout, LA center Anthony Davis picked up from where he left off Friday in a dominant game over the Thunder, pouring in points by driving into the paint at will:

James looked more or less like himself. Though his jumper was a bit streaky, he managed to score efficient buckets inside as well:

After a fairly back-and-forth first quarter, Chicago galloped out to a robust advantage in the middle of the contest's second frame. Starting Bulls center Nikola Vucevic was whistled for something of a phantom foul while defending James.

He protested the call to an attendant referee, who subsequently assessed him two technicals and ejected from the game in an insane overreaction. Ex-Lakers backup center Andre Drummond, now pulling down rebounds and missing bunnies for Chicago, stepped in.

The absence of Vucevic had an instant impact. Los Angeles went on an 18-4 run to close out the frame. Referees once again showed LA some preferential treatment in the game's second quarter, whistling Chicago for seven fouls while calling the Lakers for just one.

After leading by as much as 20 points, the Bulls found themselves up just eight at the halftime break, 63-55.

Replay Video

Chicago looked totally re-engaged at the top of the third quarter, getting out to a 9-2 run to start the second half, extending their lead to a far more comfortable 72-55. LA center Anthony Davis appeared to jam a finger on his left hand during a play, but managed to stay in the game while grimacing. 

Davis, who basically seems to hurt a new part of his body with every other play, then landed awkwardly while drawing a foul on Andre Drummond on a fadeaway jumper, and appeared to ominously grimace before returning to his feet. Drummond was assessed a Flagrant 1 foul for what frankly looked like incidental contact. 

Davis was whistled for his fifth foul late in the game's third period after undercutting Andre Drummond, and had to be removed from the floor for LA a bit early.

Chicago took a double digit lead into the fourth period, 91-78. 

The fourth quarter would prove to be a game of runs.

DeMar DeRozan made a pair of triples (off the dribble!) to put the Bulls up by 20, 99-79, early in the fourth quarter. 

The Lakers responded by going on a quick 7-0 run to cut the lead to 13, until Chicago responded to said response with an 8-0 tear to tie their prior game-high 21-point advantage, 107-86. The Bulls began playing a bit more lackadaisically, allowing LA back into the game with some lethargic, sloppy play. Los Angeles went on a 10-2 tear to pull within 11, 109-96. 

The two teams then proceeded to exchange buckets, with their respective All-Star forwards doing work to drive inside for contact.

Although reserve LA shooting guard Malik Beasley got the Lakers back into the game with a critical triple, it would be too little, too late. DeMar DeRozan and Derrick Jones Jr. put the finishing touches on Chicago's surprise road victory.

Six Lakers, led by James' 19 points on 6-of-11 shooting, scored in double figures during the 118-108 loss. The defeat drops Los Angeles to a 37-38 record on the season, while elevating Chicago to 36-38. When the two teams next face off on Wednesday, the Lakers will boast a mighty rest advantage, as the Bulls face off against the LA Clippers tomorrow on the second night of a back-to-back. 

In his first post-Lakers return to Arena as a visitor, Beverley scored 10 points on 4-of-7 shooting (1-of-3 from deep), dished out five assists, pulled down four rebounds, and swiped one steal.

Are you following us on Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube yet? Join the conversation as we discuss the latest Lakers news and rumors with fans like you!

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon