The Los Angeles Lakers have looked like a different team over the past few weeks, but most of that success has come at home. On Friday night they proved they could keep things going on the road.
Brandon Ingram had a bounce-back game and the Lakers even got some clutch free throw shooting as they held off the Chicago Bulls, 107-102, in the first stop of a five-game road trip.
Ingram, who had been held to 10 or fewer points in his last four games, exploded for 25 points, nine rebounds, and five assists (all team highs). Jordan Clarkson also continued his strong stretch of play with 19 points and four assists.
This game was not without its tight moments as the Lakers just couldn’t hold on to leads. They were up by as many as 17 points in the first quarter, but led by only five at the half. After Chicago tied things up in the third, the Lakers again pushed ahead and went into the fourth quarter with a 12-point lead.
But the Bulls went on another run and even pushed ahead to a three-point lead before Ingram took over down the stretch and the free throw line actually became the Lakers’ best friend. The team made seven of their eight free throws in the final minute of the game to put things away.
The Lakers also got a strong showing from Brook Lopez, who outdueled his twin brother Robin. Brook finished with 17 points, six rebounds and two blocks while Robin had just eight points and four rebounds.
Chicago was led by its bench on this night as Nikola Mirotic has 18 points to pace them. Denzel Valentine had a double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds while Bobby Portis just missed one of his own with 16 and nine rebounds.
Next up for the Lakers is another big test as they head up north to face one of the East’s best in the Toronto Raptors.
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