NBA Game Summary - LA Lakers at Chicago
(Friday, December 9th)
Final Score: LA Lakers 93, Chicago 80
Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - Kobe Bryant scored 23 points, grabbed nine rebounds and handed out eight assists, as the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Chicago Bulls, 93-80, at the United Center.
Lamar Odom added 19 points and seven rebounds while Brian Cook contributed 16 points for the Lakers, who have won four straight games. Smush Parker posted 13 points in the win.
Kirk Hinrich netted 26 points and added seven helpers while Mike Sweetney chipped in 22 points and 12 boards for the Bulls, who have dropped three of their last four games.
The news was not all sour, though, as Chicago retired Scottie Pippen's No. 33 jersey at halftime. Pippen, a legendary Bull, spent 12 of his 17 NBA seasons in the Windy City, and, along with Michael Jordan, helped Chicago win six NBA titles (1991-93, 1996-98).
In addition, the future Hall of Fame forward, Pippen was a seven-time All- Star, a member of the NBA All-Defensive Team from 1991-2000 and was selected as one of the 50 greatest players in NBA history.
"I would like to take this time out to thank the Chicago Bulls organization for this evening," Pippen told the crowd. "It is truly a great honor for me and my family to have this day to join some of the great players in this organization. To be alongside the greatest player ever to play this game (Jordan), means so much to me...I will never forget what you did for me and what I was able to do for you. I will always keep you at the top of my heart and will never forget you."
Pippen was also presented with several gifts during the ceremony, including a replica banner, three hand-crafted NBA championship trophies and a commemorative home jersey.
"He is truly deserving of his number hanging in the rafters," Jordan said of Pippen.
"He (Pippen) was the best. He worked hard in this game and he had an aptitude for this game," added current Lakers coach Phil Jackson, who was the head man during Chicago's dynasty and has since added three NBA titles to his resume as Los Angeles' head coach (2000-02).
Leading by four points heading into the final period, the Lakers quickly extended the margin to eight. Cook's basket with 4:48 to go then made it an 84-74 contest, but Chicago closed within six moments later.
However, the Bulls never got any closer as they were outscored by seven the rest of the way.
Los Angeles led by four late in the first period, but closed the quarter on a 10-0 run to grab a 33-19 lead.
Chicago missed 11 straight shots bridging the first and second quarters and finally put an end to a scoring drought that lasted just over six minutes when Othella Harrington hit a fadeaway jumper with 8:37 to go in the second.
Despite the Bulls' early struggles, though, they got back into the game courtesy of a 9-0 flurry to start the second quarter. The Lakers allowed Chicago to get within three points as the visitors also missed 11 straight shots in the second and did not a score a point until just past the halfway point of the frame.
Los Angeles eventually led 47-37 at the half.
In the third quarter, the Bulls again battled back and tied the score at 63 apiece courtesy of Sweetney's three-point play with around 2:45 to play. The Lakers rebounded, though, and eventually led 72-68 after 36 minutes.
LA made 7-of-18 three-pointers while the Bulls were just 2-of-15 from behind the arc...Pippen joined Jordan, Jerry Sloan and Bob Love as the only players to have their number retired by the Bulls. Jackson also has a banner hung from the rafters.
12/09 23:23:11 ET