Notebook: Bobcats 91, Bulls 81



Posted Dec 31, 2012 6:27 PM

By Kent McDill, for NBA.com

THE FACTS: Led by Kemba Walker's 18 points, the Charlotte Bobcats broke their 18-game losing streak with a wire-to-wire 91-81 victory over the host Chicago Bulls Monday. Gerald Henderson scored 16 points while bench players Ramon Sessions and Ben Gordon contributed 15 points each. The Bulls were led by Luol Deng with 20 points and 12 rebounds and Carlos Boozer had 19 points and 14 rebounds.

THE FACTS II: The Bobcats played without forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, who was declared out prior to the game because of an eye injury suffered in Saturday's game against New Orleans. The Bulls played without starting guard Kirk Hinrich due to a sore left knee. Bulls center Joakim Noah played with flu-like symptoms and had only two points and four rebounds in 30 minutes.

QUOTABLE I: "We are a desperate team. We just wanted to fight more than anything."
-- Charlotte guard Gerald Henderson.

THE STAT: Both teams made 33 field goals in the game. The Bobcats attempted 70 shots (47 percent) while the Bulls attempted 94 shots (35.1 percent.) The Bobcats outscored the Bulls at the free-throw line 21-11, and attempted 38 free throws to just 18 for the Bulls.

THE STAT II: For the seventh time in the last nine games, the Bulls were outrebounded, this time by a 52-49 margin.

THE STAT III: The Bulls bench equaled the Bulls starters in points scored (21-21) and rebounds (11-11) in the first half.

RECORD REMINDER: The Bobcats were 7-5 when their 18-game losing streak began.

TURNING POINT: After trailing by as much as 11 points in the third quarter, the Bulls tied the game at 65 to end the third quarter. But the Bobcats scored the first 10 points of the fourth quarter and the Bulls did not make a basket in the final period until the 6:29 mark.

INJURY UPDATE: Kidd-Gilchrist, who was poked in the eye in Saturday's game against New Orleans, decided just before game time that he could not play Monday. Hinrich did not play due to pain in his left knee and is day-to-day.

HOT: In his third game back from a knee injury, Charlotte guard Ben Gordon was seven for 12 from the field for 15 points, but did not attempt a 3-pointer.

NOT: Nobody on the Bulls shot well, but Nate Robinson, who replaced Hinrich as a starter, was two for 11 from the field. After missing his first six shots, his seventh went in, and he clasped his hands in front of his chest and looked skyward, sending his thanks to someone somewhere.

QUOTABLE II: "We looked like a team on both ends of the court."
-- Charlotte coach Mike Dunlap

GOOD MOVE: Dunlap said he abandoned the team's playbook in the fourth quarter as things went so well for the team from an offensive standpoint.

BAD MOVE: The Bulls did not have any energy in the holiday game, and Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau blamed himself for not having the team ready to play.

QUOTABLE III: "We need an edge to start the game. We cannot ease our way into a game and say 'OK, we're good, we'll get ourselves corrected.' It doesn't go like that."
-- Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau

INSIDE THE ARENA: Although he didn't get the words correct, one Charlotte player celebrated the victory by yelling "Merry New Year!" as he walked into the Bobcats locker room.

ROOKIE WATCH: Getting a start in place of fellow and injured rookie Kidd-Gilchrist, rookie Jeffery Taylor had five points and four rebounds in 25 minutes of play. Bulls rookie guard Marquis Teague had four points and three assists in 19 minutes.

NOTABLE: The Bobcats avoided becoming only the fourth team since 1987 to go winless in a month with at least 16 games; the Bobcats did it last April... The Bobcats have a huge break in the schedule, that should help them get healthy and get practice time. They have three full days off before playing Cleveland Friday... Maybe it's a holiday thing; the Bulls lost to Houston by 23 on Christmas Day.

UP NEXT: For the Bulls, Wednesday @ Orlando, Friday @ Miami, Monday vs. Cavaliers. For the Bobcats, Friday vs. Cavaliers, Sunday @ Pistons, Jan. 9 vs. Jazz.