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. Lakers All-Star guard Kobe Bryant and Bulls guard Nate Robinson tied as leading scorers with 19 each. Bryant also led the Lakers with nine assists while committing only two turnovers. 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. Chicago played without Derrick Rose, Rip Hamilton, Kirk Hinrich and Taj Gibson. The Lakers are still missing big men Pau Gasol, who should return from a foot injury, and Jordan Hill, who is out for the season with a hip injury.