The Los Angeles Lakers were flying high heading into their Christmas Day matchup with the Chicago Bulls after beating arguably the best team in the league without Kobe Bryant.
The Lakers beat the Golden State Warriors at the Staples Center on Tuesday night with relative ease without their superstar, but couldn’t come up with a repeat performance on Dec. 25 at the United Center.
Even with Kobe stuck on the sidelines, Nick Young didn’t get much time on the floor to shoulder the load. Head coach Byron Scott wasn’t impressed with Young’s effort defensively and therefore didn’t play the team’s second-best player more than 17 minutes.
Scott talked about Young’s poor performance saying the following after the game, according to Janis Carr of the OC Register:
BScott: "They struggled period." On Young "He wasnt defending…he didn't play well period."
— janis carr (@janiscarr) December 26, 2014
In his short time on the floor on Thursday, Young scored only three points on 1-of-6 shooting. Wesley Johnson led the Lakers with a team-high 19 points followed by Ed Davis with 16 and Carlos Boozer with 14.
Scott has been all about defense since becoming the team’s head coach in July. The former Laker great emphasized defense and keeping his players accountable for their effort on that end of the floor. Young clearly wasn’t cutting it for Scott and was stuck watching on the bench along with Kobe as the Bulls beat the Lakers, 113-93.
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