Bulls struggle against Western Conference teams early this season


CHICAGO – One of the biggest storylines of the 2021-2022 season for the Bulls was their inability to have success against competitive teams.

It was a flaw that showed itself last in the season when a ramped-up schedule saw the team slip from first in the Eastern Conference at the All-Star Break to sixth by the time the playoffs came along.

Now the Bulls have a new group of teams they’re struggling against early in the 2022-2023 season.

Thanks to a loss to the Pelicans on Wednesday night, the Bulls are now 0-4 on the young season against teams from the Western Conference. Last season, the Bulls were 17-13 against teams from the west.

Against teams from the Eastern Conference, the Bulls are 6-5 on the year and sit with a 6-9 overall mark as they prepare to face the Magic on Friday evening at the United Center.

Here are the results for the Bulls so far against Western Conference teams:

October 28th – at Spurs – 129-124 loss

November 9th – vs Pelicans – 115-111 loss

Sunday – vs Nuggets – 126-103 loss

Wednesday – at Pelicans – 124-110 loss

The last two losses in particular have been more concerning considering the team has lost by double digits in each contest with sizable deficits in each heading into the fourth quarter.

After the loss to the Nuggets on Sunday, head coach Billy Donovan said he wanted his team to play better when faced with adversity, as they were early against Denver at the United Center. That message didn’t translate for the game in New Orleans, as the Pelicans broke the game open in the third quarter and maintained the double-digit advantage till the end.

The next stretch against Western Conference teams comes on a six-game road trip that starts with a game against the Bucks in Milwaukee on November 23rd. Then it’s all teams from the west for the rest of the trip:

November 25th – at Thunder

November 28th – at Jazz

November 30th – at Suns

December 2nd – at Warriors

December 4th – at Kings

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