Sweetney, Duhon Lead Bulls Over Celtics
Chicago 118, Boston 86
CHICAGO, Dec. 17 (Ticker) -- Michael Sweetney brutalized the Boston Celtics in the paint and Chris Duhon burned them from behind the arc.
Sweetney scored a season-high 24 points and Duhon added 22 as the hot-shooting Chicago Bulls rolled to a 118-86 victory over the Celtics, who have lost four of their last five games.
"We have too much pride to play that poorly last night, then come out flat at home," Sweetney said. "So we played hard today. It was more physical and we played like we realized what kind of team we have to play like."
Sweetney shot 10-of-13 from the field and grabbed seven rebounds. Duhon shot a blistering 6-of-7 from 3-point range and dished out eight assists.
"I want to be more consistent with my 3-point shooting," Duhon said. "Coach Adams (assistant Ron Adams) told me my first 3-point shot was flat, so I made an adjustment and they all started going down."
Chicago, which ended a four-game home skid, held a 51-42 halftime lead and blew open the game in the third quarter, scoring 39 points on 70 percent (14-of-20) shooting - including 9-of-10 from downtown - to push the advantage to 90-63.
"We were bad and they were on fire," Boston coach Doc Rivers said. "We watched their game last night and they missed every open shot. Tonight they made them all."
Andres Nocioni and Darius Songaila each scored 16 points and Ben Gordon had 13 off the bench for the Bulls, who shot 60 percent (43-of-72) overall and a staggering 14-of-17 from 3-point range.
Nocioni was 4-of-5 from 3-point land and Gordon hit 2-of-3.
"I am really happy with the way all of our guys responded tonight," Bulls coach Scott Skiles said. "I thought right from the start of the game, we were in tune with what we were doing."
Ricky Davis scored 21 points and Paul Pierce had 20 but were the only two Celtics in double figures.
"I don't think we concentrate hard and believe in one another out there," Pierce said. "We lose our confidence when teams score and hit tough shots on us. We need to get all five guys on defense on the same page."