The Bulls were well and truly beaten by Indiana Pacers on Monday night at the United Center.

Bulls came into the game 12 - 5 with Pacers 7- 11.

Bulls confidence was high following a pretty successful West coast trip and beating New York Knicks the night before at the UC. However, coming into the game Alex Caruso was ruled out with a wrist injury, adding him to the list of key players missing for Bulls that includes Nikola Vučević and Patrick Williams.

This led to the return of Coby White and getting his first start of the season where he was hoping to pick up where he left off against the Knicks.

There isn't really to much to write about in this game as from the start it was clear that this wasn't going to be Bulls night:

  • Pacers going 15-5 up in four minutes.

  • Bulls shots just not falling and looking very much off the pace.

  • Also the lack of size was very obvious with Domantas Sabonis and Myles Turner dominating the Bulls.

  • End of the 1st and Pacers lead 31-16.

Into the second, Zach LaVine and DeMar DeRozan seemed to be taking turns with scoring flurries, coupled with Javonte Green offering his usual energy and hustle from the bench, the Bulls managed to cut the lead down to 8 points.

This was as good as it got for Bulls who continued to just be dominated by the Pacers front court. All 5 Pacers starters in double figures by the end of the second.

Get to half time and Pacers now lead by 21, up 67-46.The 3rd quarter comes and Bulls just looked out of it. Nothing falling for them and they looked beat. The West coast trip and previous night against Knicks has really caught up with them. The Pacers were not letting up at all and really took it to Bulls extending their lead to 31 points during the quarter, eventually finishing the quarter up 89-61.

Into the fourth quarter and it seems every last bit of hope has been sucked out of the UC, on the broadcast it sounded like Covid times with no fans there at all. Even Billy Donovan realizes it's over as he finally empties his bench and let's the starters rest up.

Rookie sensation Ayo Dosunmu was effectively leading the team at this point. Gaining some big minutes and further enhancing his encouraging development. Devon Dotson also made his first appearance of the season after impressing in the G League with Windy City Bulls.

But the biggest shout of the night went to Marko Simonivić who made his NBA debut. It isn't one that will be remembered anytime soon finishing with a missed 3, an offensive goaltend and splitting 2 free throws to get his 1st NBA point (missed on the broadcast as Stacey King and Adam Amin were looking at a meme).

The game eventually (thankfully) finished with Pacers winning 109 - 77, the lowest scoring game for Bulls so far this season.

Pacers dominated from start to finish on both ends of the court, limiting the Bulls to below 40% on shooting and limiting the Bulls big 3 to finishing under 20 points for the first time this season (Lonzo 0 points on 0-7 shooting). Definitely a game that the Bulls will want to forget very quickly.

On the plus side the Bulls have bounced back from defeats (4-1) so far this season. Their next game is against the Houston Rockets in Houston who have the worst record in the league at 1-16. It remains to be seen whether or not Caruso and Vučević will return to the lineup with latter set to travel with the team for the game.

I'll be up at 1a.m here in the UK to watch it, hoping that we can move on from this Pacers game and put on a real display of conviction and get back to SHOWTIME BULLS

- Matt H. Twitter: @MattHearn1

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