By Richard Kagan
The Chicago Bulls made its shots and that resulted in a win in a tense game at the United Center, over the Charlotte Hornets, 123-120.
The Bulls rallied from a nine point deficit early in the fourth quarter and tied the game mid-way through the quarter on a Kris Dunn basket. The Bulls shot 51.6% in the game and off-set a 47 point night by Hornets’ guard Kemba Walker. Walker nearly won it in the final seconds but his layup was short and Lauri Markkanen made both free-throws to seal the W.
The Bulls win was the third of the season and it was perhaps the most inspired effort of the year coming off a recent rout to the San Antonio Spurs and having scored only scored 7 points in the first quarter of another game with the Oklahoma City Thunder. Friday night it scored 26. And at half-time we had a tie game at 60 all. Chicago finally got some scoring and looked like a pro-basketball team. It made 50% of three-point shots (17-34), also a season high.
Justin Holiday had 27 for the Bulls. Guard Kris Dunn had a blazing second half and ended up with 22 points and 7 assists. Denzel Valentine had 18 points and made some key buckets. Forward Lauri Markkanen finished with 16 points, with the final 2 coming on free-throws to ice the game. Bobby Portis and Jerian Grant added 10 points. Both started the game slowly but came on the in second half.
The Bulls scored 40 points in the fourth quarter to win the game over slumping Charlotte.
In the fourth quarter Chicago made shots to overtake Charlotte and it made key baskets to pull ahead and stay there. Dunn was impressive in the fourth quarter and Denzel Valentine made some big baskets too. Dunn played perhaps his best game in a Bulls uniform. He was all over the court.
”We needed that from him”, said Coach Hoiberg