James leads Lakers past Bulls
CHICAGO (AP) — LeBron James had 36 points and 10 rebounds, and the Los Angeles Lakers overcame a 20-point deficit to beat the Chicago Bulls 123-107 on Tuesday night and end a five-game losing streak.
James played 33 minutes and showed no signs of letting up with the Lakers barely hanging on in the playoff race. He took over after the Lakers’ 14-point lead was cut to four with 8:38 left, making a jumper and then on the next possession going through the lane for a thunderous dunk.
James didn’t stop there, hitting a 3-pointer over 7-footer Robin Lopez and capping it off when Josh Hart passed the ball off the backboard to James, who finished with a reverse dunk to put the Lakers up 115-101 with 5 minutes remaining.
Kyle Kuzma added 21 points after missing two games with an ankle injury. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 24 points off the bench for the Lakers, who outscored the Bulls 43-24 in the third quarter.
Lopez had 20 points and seven rebounds, and Otto Porter Jr. finished with 19 for the Bulls.
With Lonzo Ball and Brandon Ingram ruled out for the season, James put on a show at United Center like he did so many times as a member of the Cavaliers and Heat.
The Bulls outscored the Lakers 11-1 after he checked out in the first quarter to lead 34-16 at the end of the period.
The Bulls led 60-55 at the half. Ryan Arcidiacono and Lopez led Chicago with 12 apiece. James finished with 16 points and seven rebounds in the half and Caldwell-Pope added 11 points.
James continued the momentum in the third quarter. He scored the first six points for Los Angeles, including a breakaway reverse dunk from Kuzma. The Lakers took a 66-64 lead when James found Kuzma for a layup with 8:49 in the third quarter. Kuzma, who scored 12 points in the period, made a 3 to ignite a 16-0 run late in the quarter. Rajon Rondo buried a 3 to give the Lakers a 98-84 lead going to the fourth.