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The Chicago Bulls had been flying high over the past week, winning three of four road games against some tough Western Conference foes. However, they were brought back to earth on Monday, felled by the Dallas Mavericks by 35 points, 127-92.

With the regular season winding down and the Bulls aspiring to nab a higher ranking, veteran wingman DeMar DeRozan stressed the importance of how the team responds to this “butt-kicking” from the Mavericks.

Losses like this are part of the season

With the talent level, every NBA team has, it's not surprising to see teams get blown out on any given night. Any time a team comes to the game unprepared or not as sharp as usual, they risk being on the wrong end of a lopsided scoreline. DeRozan acknowledges that this loss is just part of the ups and downs of a long NBA season. He knows what matters most is how the team bounces back from this defeat.

“Every team is due for a butt-kicking of some sort throughout the season,” DeRozan said.

“We have to let this be our last and only one for the rest of the season. It’s all about how you respond from here on out.”

Writing was on the wall

The writing was on the wall at the United Center as early as the first quarter. Luka Doncic was on fire, racking up 15 points, six rebounds, and six assists. Big men Dereck Lively II and Daniel Gafford were getting anything they wanted inside while the Bulls struggled to find their rhythm offensively.

The first quarter ended with the Mavs ahead by 28, 44-16; that was all she wrote for the game.

“It was obvious. They came out, jumped on us and played aggressive defensively. Offensively, they got to their stuff. We have to give them credit. It’s no excuse on our end, no matter how tough of a road trip we just came off. We have to be ready to play,” Deebo shared.