The Lakers won their third consecutive game on Sunday afternoon by defeating the Chicago Bulls. It didn't take late-game heroics or a 25-point comeback as in their previous wins over the Toronto Raptors and New Orleans Hornets.
The Lakers led most of the game, including by as many as 18 points, against a short-handed Bulls squad.
With the victory the Lakers improved to 33-31, climbing past the Utah Jazz into eighth place in the Western Conference. The Bulls are now 37-27.
The Lakers had six players in double figures while shooting 45.3% from the field.
Lakers center Dwight Howard pulled down 21 rebounds while blocking four shots and scoring 16 points. He missed all five of his free throws, though.
Center Joakim Noah had a strong game as well for the Bulls with 18 points, 17 rebounds and three blocks.
Metta World Peace had a difficult shooting night, missing all six of his three-point shots, but he matched Carlos Boozer's 12 points. Boozer had a difficult time scoring against the physical World Peace, making only four of 16 shots from the field.
Steve Nash found his shot and the Lakers quickly pulled ahead of the Bulls by as many as 18 points. The veteran guard finished the third quarter with 16 points on six-of-nine shooting.
Once Howard sat with his fourth foul, the Bulls were able to whittle the Lakers' lead down to 12.
Nate Robinson leads all scorers with 17 points, although Chicago is shooting only 36.4% from the field.
The Lakers are shooting 45.6% from the field.
The Lakers briefly gave up their lead to the Bulls before pulling ahead by six points. With the chance to make it eight, Metta World Peace was called for a moving screen and Nate Robinson scored in the final seconds of the second quarter to make it a four-point game at the half.
Robinson was the game's leading scorer with 13 points -- followed by Dwight Howard's eight.