The Mavericks entered United Center in Chicago, Illinois Wednesday night to take on the Bulls. A team who shared the same record as the Mavericks at 7-3 but the buzz around both teams could not be more contrasting. The Bulls added several new faces in the off-season, including four-time NBA All-star DeMar DeRozan as well as Lonzo Ball.
The Mavericks started the first quarter slow on Wednesday night at one point falling behind by 11 points early on. Jalen Brunson and co. managed to stay in the game, coming back from an all-too-familiar deficit to manage a 33-32 at the end of the first quarter. The lead seemed improbable considering the Mavs shot 40% compared to the Bulls 52%.
Mavs went on a 33-15 scoring run after their initial tough start to take a 46-39 lead 6 minutes into the second quarter. This run was countered well my the Bulls though wi5 an 18-6 run of their own. The two teams traded leads before the Bulls took control, Lonzo Ball seemed to be in the right place every time Chicago needed a 3 pointer. Ball poured on 5 3’s to this point in the game and Dallas found themselves down by 7 at the half at 61-54.
Lonzo Ball continued his tear from beyond the arc adding two more in 3rd. After a slower than normal start Zach Lavine decided to show up and show out with some fairly spectacular circus layups to put the Mavs down, but not out, by 9 a little bit past midway through the 3rd quarter. Luka kept the Mavs within striking distance with a few spectacular moves of his own. In several back-to-back possessions Luka hit a fadeaway, a step back 3, and assisted on a Dwight Powell alley-oop that involved Luka throwing the ball around his waist once before tossing it up, which made everyone in the arena smile and groan simultaneously. Unfortunately for the Mavericks each of these feats was answered by a determined Bulls team. After another dismal 3rd quarter the Mavs entered the 4th trailing the Bulls by 15 points at 95-80.
Unfortunately, the 4th quarter was largely more of the same for the Mavs. They didn’t play particularly poor but the Bulls just had more talent on the floor at any given time and it was just too much for this Mavs squad.
Mavs lose to the Bulls 117-107